An infographic on the cost of drug crime for American taxpayers and the inmates themselves.
Research, design and code an online
infographic on the cost of crime.
Online Scrolling Website
Prof. Karen Cheng
Nearly half of the Federal inmate population are incarcerated for non-violent drug charges. The chance of going to prison for a drug crime has been increasing even though crime has been on the decline. This infographic aims to explain why this is an issue and what the public can do to change it.
In-person interviews with various Law Societies & Justice Professors at the UW and correspondence with a local Parole Officer.
Over 20 hours of online, government database and library research.
Through researching there appeared to be a large issue with the cost of housing an inmate. However the cost to tax payers was not the only issue. Nearly every research study that was encountered during research, showed that incarceration was ineffective and had lasting
negative implications to the individuals and society. There were many organizations in place fighting things such as mandatory minimums and the Three Strikes Law. Poles conducted showed that the nation's desire for reforms has been increasing steadily. States have started their own parole reform programs, but it continuously seemed that the Federal Government was falling behind on these steps towards the future of our justice system.
A point of difficulty was developing a clear and cohesive story. It took almost three critiques to develop a story line that was succinct and helped make a point. There were copious news articles and nearly 20 studies to gather data from, which made making a solid decision even
harder. The focus was narrowed down to the leading contributing factor to the cost of drug crime; the Federal incarceration costs which rounded out to a whopping $300,000 for a single inmate's sentence.
The final work can be seen above, but below are my initial drafts.
Equipped with the research and data, I still initially struggled to work out a good narrative that conveyed the gravity of the subject.
I thought I could begin my story by conveying that the drugs people were incarcerated for were relatively harmless. This was a start in the wrong direction. I realized that it was a tough argument to make and it complicated the storyline.
The next attempt, and a massive improvement. The order was a bit off, but it was my first step in the right direction.
This is where I began to establish more visual structure and flow the right content in. I was seriously lacking in visual finesse at this time.
As you can see, I improved dramatically over the entire process and I even picked up some visual skills. I learned that I really love to illustrate and I feel that it helped carry and connect the story. The project proved to be a great testament to my storytelling abilities, but in the end the final product developed into a successful infographic. I published this site through an
internal program at UW using HTML + CSS. Unfortunately, the site is no longer live.
Primary and secondary research
Learned the basics of HTML + CSS.
Typography and Data Visualization.
Math, and a lot of it.