The deadline to enter in Iron Viz 2020 is rapidly approaching—here’s everything you need to know

Team Tableau Public
el July 22, 2020

The 2020 Iron Viz qualifier contest is underway and this year the prizes are bigger than ever. The three finalists of the Iron Viz qualifier contest will advance to the Iron Viz championship for a chance to win $10,000. Whether you’re a seasoned veteran or just getting started, participating in Iron Viz is an opportunity to challenge yourself and compete with data enthusiasts from around the world! Keep reading for tips and tricks from the community, information about this year’s guest judges, and instructions on how to enter.

Resource roundup

Check out these resources from past Iron Viz participants to learn why you should enter Iron Viz and how to be successful:

Guest judges

Vizzes will be scored based on three criteria: analysis, design, and storytelling. A panel of Tableau Community Judges will score the first round determining the top 10 entries that advance to a second round of scoring by a set of guest judges. The three data rockstars with the highest score from our guest judges will win cash prizes and proceed as our 2020 finalists to compete in the virtual Iron Viz championship this October. (Please note, judges are not allowed to provide feedback on entries during the submission period. To ensure fairness, each entry will be judged by more than one judge and the average score will be used.) Read on to learn about this year’s impressive panel of guest judges.


Ann K. Emery is an internationally-acclaimed speaker who equips organizations to get their data out of dusty spreadsheets and into real-world conversations. Each year, she delivers over 50 keynotes, workshops, and webinars with the aim of equipping organizations to visualize data more effectively. She has been invited to speak in more than 30 states and 10 countries; more than 3,200 people have enrolled in her online training academy; and she has consulted for more than 150 organizations, including the United Nations, Centers for Disease Control, and Harvard University.

Amanda Makulec is the Senior Data Visualization Lead at Excella, where she coaches teams and develops user-centered data visualization products for federal, non-profit, and private sector clients. Prior to joining Excella in 2017, Amanda spent eight years working with data in global health programs in more than a dozen countries. She is a founding board member and Operations Director for the Data Visualization Society and writes about responsible visualization of health data.

Jonathan Schwabish is an economist and writer, teacher, and creator of policy-relevant data visualizations. He helps nonprofits, research institutions, and governments at all levels improve how they communicate their work and findings to their colleagues, partners, clients, and constituents. He is the author of Better Presentations: A Guide for Scholars, Researchers, and Wonks (Columbia, 2016).

Nathan Yau has a PhD in statistics with a dissertation on personal data collection and using visualization in an everyday context. He's the force behind [the essential] FlowingData.com blog which explores how statisticians, designers, data scientists, and others use analysis, visualization, and exploration to understand data and ourselves. He’s authored two best-selling books Visualize This and Data Points.

Shirley Wu is an award-winning creative focused on data-driven art and visualizations. She has worked with clients such as Google, The Guardian, SFMOMA, and NBC Universal to develop custom, highly interactive data visualizations. She combines her love of art, math, and code into colorful, compelling narratives that push the boundaries of the web. Her work can be found at sxywu.com.

Stu Kim-Brown Stu Kim-Brown finished his PhD in Economics at Berkley and joined Nielsen Mobile, where he developed market research data products. He moved to online game-maker Zynga in 2010, where he joined a team that broke ground in the field of big-data user behavior analytics. Stu joined MyFitnessPal as the head of Product Analytics in 2014, and when the nutrition-tracking app was acquired by Under Armour, built and led the team that would generate and share KPIs, event-based user behavior insights, and statistical support for experimentation across all of the Under Armour Connected Fitness apps.

How to enter:

No matter your level of experience, Iron Viz is an opportunity to push your skills, learn something new, and engage with an incredible community. Every expert was once a beginner—dream big and start now.

  1. Download Tableau Desktop.
  2. Create a Tableau Public profile.
  3. Get some publicly-available data. Check out the resources above or this blog post by Jacob Olsufka for tips on finding free and interesting data sets.
  4. Publish your visualization to your Tableau Public Profile.
  5. Once published, submit a link to your published visualization here.

Submissions will be accepted until August 4th, 2020 (11:59:59 p.m. Pacific Standard Time). For more information on prizes, official rules, and instructions to enter, please head to the contest page.

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to legal residents of Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Canada (excluding Quebec), Chile, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Ireland, Japan, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom, or the United States who are validly registered users of Tableau Public, who have validly registered in the Contest, and who are at least the age of majority in their jurisdiction of residence at the time of entry. “Contest Period” is from 12:01 a.m. PT on 07/01/2020 through 11:59 p.m. on 08/04/2020. To enter, during the Contest Period: (a) visit https://www.tableau.com/iron-viz and register as a contestant in the Contest; (b) properly download the Tableau software and connect to any free and publicly available data set; (c) produce and publish a Tableau Public data visualization; and (d) provide the URL of the visualization to Sponsor at https://www.tableau.com/iron-viz. Three finalists will each receive the following: (i) one digital conference registration to the digital 2020 Tableau Conference (currently scheduled for October 5 - 8, 2020) (Approximate Retail Value “ARV”: $0), (ii) assorted Tableau apparel and accessories (ARV: $600); (iii) a $200 gift certificate to the Tableau Store (ARV: $200); and (ii) qualification to participate in the final. Seven (7) runners-up will each receive a $200 gift certificate to the Tableau Store (ARV: $200). Odds of winning depend on number and quality of eligible entries. Contest subject to Official Rules. Details and restrictions apply, so visit https://www.tableau.com/iron-viz for Official Rules. Sponsor: Tableau Software, Inc.