Visualizing the network of world merchandise trade

Visualizing the network of world merchandise trade

Grasping the dynamics of world trade from tabular data is difficult. When around $18 trillion worth of merchandise is moving between economies in a single year, it can all get just a bit too confusing.  With the aim of clarifying the strength of trade links between the major world regions, and the changing relationships over time, the Locus Insight team has built an innovative viewer for global merchandise trading relationships. The dynamic chart shows the value of trade between the major world regions for the three years 2008 to 2010. The chart is built using the brilliant open source D3.js library.(

This is a proof of concept project demonstrating the potential for this type of interactive chart as a tool for communicating complex trade data to a public audience with a growing appetite for engaging and informative data visualizations.


Given the necessary time and resources we will build on this platform to develop a rich information portal enabling drill-down to country level and providing an analysis of trade by product category.