Understanding public spending - 700 tables of data in one diagram

Governments around the world collect taxes and redistribute 30%-50% of our income. Surprisingly, in the age of the internet there is no easy way to track how public money is spent. If you search, you will find impenetrable financial jargon, perplexing government websites, or no data at all. For these very reasons, wikibudgets will present all public budgets of the world in a structured, accessible, and searchable way.

We'd like to present a small example of that wikibudgets can do based on the 2014-2015 budget of the Royal Borough of Greenwich, London. This diagram is derived from data sourced from 720 tables scattered across 14 PDF documents that results in a 5600 node Sankey diagram.

Royal Borough of Greenwich
Royal Borough of Greenwich, Budget 2014 - 2015

What you see is a visualisation tool that combines a Sankey diagram with zoomable interface to tackle the complexity of real-world budgeting. The prototype app is an early Beta which we're continuing to improve. It is not yet optimised for large data sets and its mobile functionality is rather limited. Furthermore, it will only work in select modern browsers (Chrome, Firefox, Safari). We hope you will forgive the current limitations and help us improve with your feedback.

If you like the diagram, start using it yourself with our free Sankey Builder app