Compete with data enthusiasts from around the world— the 1st Iron Viz global qualifier is here!

Team Tableau Public
四月 8, 2019

It’s time to put your data skills to the test… the first global Iron Viz qualifier contest is officially open! Winners of the three global qualifier contests will advance to the Iron Viz Championship at this year’s Tableau Conference (#data19) in Las Vegas.

The theme for the first Iron Viz qualifier: agriculture! Submissions are accepted until May 5th, 2019 (11:59:59 p.m. Pacific Standard Time). For more information on prizes, rules, and participation instructions, see the contest page.

The future of agriculture relies on data

By 2050, the world’s population will likely increase by more than 35%. How will we feed nearly 2 billion more people? And what does the future of farming look like?. These questions have driven the agricultural industry to modernize at a breakneck speed, leading to advancements in equipment, animal husbandry, biotechnology, and automated farm management. At the center of these advancements? You guessed it— lots and lots of data.

More than ever, the agricultural industry is relying on data analysis to help them make informed decisions and solve problems. Using a data set for just one country’s annual agricultural output and economic impact (see below), what data insights will you uncover?


One data set, endless possibilities: download the required data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture


For this qualifier contest, we’re trying something a little different! To better emulate the live Iron Viz championship (and to encourage more entries from those who might be daunted by the task of sourcing their own data), all participants will be required to use the following data provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA):

If you are itching to add another layer of context, then you can use this optional population data:

  • Census U.S. Intercensal County Population Data, 1970-2014: Download (xlsx)

In an effort to level the playing-field, additional data to supplement your analysis is not allowed. And, although not required, feel free to re-structure the data using Tableau Prep or other means, as needed. (For example, you may want to add rows for a sankey diagram, join cross databases for hex maps, re-name fields, pivot measures, etc.).

Get to know the judges!

Members of the Tableau community will determine the top 10 entries. Then, a panel of guest judges will select the finalist who will advance to the Iron Viz Championship at Tableau Conference 2019 in Las Vegas. Vizzes will be scored based on three criteria: Analysis, Design, and Storytelling. 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.

First-Round Community Judges


David Pires leads the London consulting team for InterWorks. He is a Tableau Ambassador and inaugural Iron Viz Europe winner who first started using Tableau in 2015. David is also co-lead of the London Tableau User Group.

Pablo Gomez is a Senior Tableau Designer at Baxter International Inc and co-founder of the consultancy firm, I for Ideas. He is also a Tableau Ambassador, co-lead of the London Tableau User Group, and co-author of the Points of Viz blog.

Ivett Kovacs is a Dashboard Designer at Starschema Ltd, a firm that helps businesses to become data-driven organizations and overcome their data analysis challenges. She is also a Tableau Public Ambassador and the organizer of the Hungary Tableau User Group.

Ravi Mistry is a Consulting Analyst at the Information Lab in London, where he helps clients see and understand data. He’s also a Tableau Ambassador and lover of sports analytics (particularly football/soccer).

John Mathis is an Analytics Practice Lead at the consulting firm, Slalom, which uses strategy and technology to transform businesses. John’s in-depth analysis of users on Yelp helped him win the 2014 Iron Viz Championship.

Timothy Vermeiren is the Head of Talent Development and Analytics Consultant for exclusive Tableau partner, Biztory. His passion for data and comprehensive knowledge about Tableau led him to become the 2018 Iron Viz Champion.

Joshua Milligan is a five-time Tableau Zen Master. He is also a principal consultant at Teknion Data Solutions, where he has served clients in numerous industries since 2004. Joshua is the author of Learning Tableau 2019 and was a finalist in the 2017 Iron Viz contest.


Second-Round Guest Judges


Amy Cesal is a designer specializing in data visualization. Amy’s data visualization work became widely known when she created one of the industry’s first style guides for charts and graphs during her time at the Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit Sunlight Foundation. In 2018, she won an Information is Beautiful “Unusual” award for DayDohViz. Amy holds a master’s degree in Information Visualization from the Maryland Institute College of Art. She also helped create the Data Visualization Society.

Jason Forrest is a father, musician, data visualization specialist, writer, and designer living in New York City. He currently works with McKinsey & Co. in the People Analytics and Measurement team where he designs anything from dashboards to mural-sized chronographics. Jason writes about the intersection of art, culture and data visualization on Medium frequently and lectures about his research on the data visualizations by W.E.B. Du Bois and others. He also released his latest album of electronic music, “Fear City,” in September 2018.

Elijah Meeks is Senior Data Visualization Engineer at Netflix, where he focuses on deploying information visualization for big data. Along with Amy Cesal and Mollie Pettit, he founded the Data Visualization Society, an organization dedicated to the professional development of data visualization practitioners. He is also author of the book D3.js in Action and the React-based data visualization framework Semiotic. Elijah is an active voice on the topic on Twitter and runs and publishes a highly-discussed survey of data visualization professionals.


Why participate in Iron Viz?

What do you stand to gain from participating? Beyond advice, encouragement, and some mad new skills, the finalist will receive:

  • Free registration for the Tableau Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Hotel accommodations for three nights in Las Vegas
  • One round trip plane ticket to Tableau Conference in Las Vegas

The winner of this contest will also receive the opportunity to compete against the other finalists onstage at Tableau Conference in Las Vegas. Do you have what it takes to be the next Iron Viz champion?

Enter the contest

Give Iron Viz a try! Just participating is a huge accomplishment.

  1. Download Tableau Desktop.
  2. Create a .
  3. Download the data.
  4. Submit your viz. Publish your visualization to your Tableau Public Profile. Once published, submit a link to your published visualization here.
  5. Don't miss out on the chance to challenge yourself and compete with data enthusiasts from around the world! Win or learn— you can’t lose.

    Follow Tableau Public on Twitter and Facebook for contest updates.



    NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to legal residents of Austria, Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, India, Ireland, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, 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. Three “Contest Periods”, from 4/8/2019 at 12:01 a.m. PT to 5/5/2019 at 11:59 p.m. PT; 6/20/2019 at 12:01 a.m. PT to 7/21/2019 at 11:59 p.m. PT; and 8/9/2019 at 12:01 a.m. PT to 9/8/2019 at 11:59 p.m. PT. To enter, during a Contest Period: (a) visit tableau.com/iron-viz and register as a contestant in the Contest; (b) properly download the Tableau Public software and connect to any publicly available data set; (c) produce and publish a Tableau Public data visualization; and (d) provide the URL of the visualization to Sponsor at tableau.com/iron-viz. Three winners will be scored based on the following judging criteria (a) Design of Submission, (b) storytelling of Submission, and (c) Submission’s analysis of the Data Set within 14 days after each Contest Period. Winners will each receive (a) one conference registration to the 2019 Tableau Customer Conference Las Vegas (ARV:$1,895 USD); (b) double occupancy hotel accommodations for four nights (ARV: $1,012 USD); (c) one round trip plane ticket to Las Vegas, Nevada (ARV: $2,246); and (d) qualification to participate in the finals. Odds of winning depend on number and quality of eligible entries. Contest subject to Official Rules. Details and restrictions apply, so visit tableau.com/iron-viz for Official Rules. Sponsor: Tableau Software, Inc.