Two topics that are right up my alley: international conflict and data visualization. Put the two together, and you have a truly thought provoking piece of work.
David McCandless is a “visual journalist” who specializes in visualizing data across numerous subjects. In his latest work for The Guardian’s Data Blog, David visualize a ton of data regarding troop deaths and injuries, size of forces by country, as well as the civilian toll in Afghanistan.
Like all good visualizers, David tells a story with his infographics, putting many issues in perspective (likely creating some “oh, I didn’t realize” moments for readers) through the use of relational data. For example, David compares absolute measures of troop fatalities by country to fatalities as a percentage of total troops deployed. What one sees is that while the US has lost the most troops by far, the Canadians have lost the most troops as a percentage of those they have deployed: