This data explorer was created on behalf of My Vote Counts, in order to help journalists and researchers navigate party political funding in South Africa. It contains mandatory disclosures from organisations and individuals who have contributed more than R100 000 a year since Q 2021, which are shared by the Independent Electoral Commission. Some high level analysis of donations by affiliation to individuals and topics are included.
MyVoteCounts contracted OpenUp to make its database of party political donations more useful for researchers, journalists and the general public. Following an internal ideation session a proposal was put forward, and accepted, called Follow The Money. This proposal was developed after researching similar projects overseas which promote funding transparency, and with an eye on marketing and growing users for any resource created.
Following acceptance of the proposal, a discovery workshop was held to better understand MVC’s needs and the state of current data. The key issues discussed were how to link data relating to donations with other information about individuals and corporate donors, in order to enable end users to understand patterns of donations (without editorialising or losing objectivity about the sources and recipients of money).
The final output consisted of a Looker Studio data explorer, and a data story celebrating two years of funding disclosures under the PPFA 2018. The data story included several visualisation and an “explorer-lite” created in Flourish.