Thursday, June 25, 2015

Mapping 40 Years of Global Terrorism

These two new interactive maps of global terrorism casualties (1970-2013), by David Johnson, provide insight into terrorism hot-spots around the world and the changing geography of terrorism over those 44 years.

The Global Terrorism Casualties map visualizes terrorism casualties around the world as a dot map. The concentration of dots in Northern Ireland, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Algeria, El Salvador and in other countries helps to emphasize some of the most political troubled locations in the last half-century. The dots on the map for each terrorist incident are sized by the number of causalities.

The same dataset is used in the Global Terrorism Heatmap. This map however adds a time element to the data. The CartoDB Torque library is used to animate the terrorism incidents by date, which provides a great visualization of terrorist hot-spots over time. For example, notice how in El Salvador terrorist casualties come to a halt in January 1992, after the end of the country's civil war.

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