Adnan Mahmud, Founder & CEOHaving witnessed the misuse of data firsthand, Adnan Mahmud, from his early years, was intrigued by the ways to harness data in making governments transparent, collaborative, and inclusive. This introspection set a path for him, building a tech career in data and analytics, and leading to the genesis of LiveStories. Headquartered in Seattle, WA, LiveStories today offers a robust platform that integrates collection and analysis of data, and allows government agencies and their partners to easily communicate information. “For cities, counties, states, and federal agencies, the platform eliminates a need for multiple tools and processes, including internet search for sourcing the data, Excel for data analysis, Powerpoint for presentation, and WordPress for content publication,” says Adnan Mahmud, Founder & CEO, LiveStories.
LiveStories has an inbuilt data library that integrates data from numerous public sources to one central location. It sources the data from over 1,500 indicators— spanning health information to crime rate—for over 40,000 U.S. locations that get updated on a continual basis. The well-organized, non-siloed data sets help government agencies avoid the time and resources spent on searching and cleansing the facts and statistics. The platform, underpinned by the colossal dataset, accelerates the end-to-end data communication initiatives of the agencies. Whether it is benchmarking the performance of their county, city or state against the peers, or to spread awareness about new initiatives to community members, LiveStories facilitates a wide gamut of data communication processes. The analytics component of the platform helps users delve deeper into statistics and create dashboards enriched with real time data variance.
Taking the journey of data further— which can be present in various formats—LiveStories simplifies the publishing process. The comparisons or data analysis can be presented in various formats like charts, factsheets, data catalogs, datastories, and datamaps.
LiveStories has in-built data library that integrates data from numerous public sources
It can be published in all required formats from one location along with a URL that is tied to the domain.
LiveStories also facilitates the involvement of multiple participants in data publication by simplifying the collaboration process. “Our platform is like Facebook meets data,” says Mahmud. Users can connect and discuss with their colleagues and discuss a chart or data story in real time.
Multiple organizations have reaped the benefits of LiveStories over the years. One of their client, the Department of Health and Human Services at County of Marin was earlier using Excel, Powerpoint, and PDFs to publish new information and data to the community. Each update was consuming 20 hours and was creating confusion around the time relevance of statistics presented in PDF reports. LiveStories enabled the department to create reports within half an hour, using the platform's story builder to combine images, charts, maps, videos, and rich text to communicate the full story. The client could publish the report online at the click of a button with a unique link. The data visualizations also helped Marin County to increase awareness to citizens around conditions like obesity and prescription misuse. Now, whenever a new report or data emerge, Marin County just uploads it into the platform, and all the charts and maps will reflect the latest information.
With LiveStories helping create such meaningful dialogues between governments and communities, Mahmud believes that they've still got a long way to traverse before tapping the full potential of data. “Empowering public sector in data publishing is a novel idea. We are making it more efficient, while also improving their decision-making process,” concludes Mahmud.