The last few years have seen a data explosion. IBM estimates that we are generating quintillion bytes of data each day, more than 90% of which has been created in the last two years. To make the best use of these developments, we have had to upgrade our understanding of how we process this mountain of data and glean relevant insights. Data journalists have been at the forefront of this revolution, transforming the way we communicate and consume information about the world around us.

Here are 7 of the foremost data journalists from around the world whom you should know about.

1. Nate Silver, editor-in-chief for ESPN’s FiveThirtyEight Blog

data journalism, ESPNNate Silver is a statistician who first gained public recognition for developing PECOTA, a system for forecasting the performance and career development of Major League Baseball players, and shot to fame after correctly predicting the outcome of all 50 states in the 2012 U.S. presidential election. He is currently the editor-in-chief of ESPN‘s FiveThirtyEight blog and a Special Correspondent for ABC News and has previously worked as a political forecaster at The New York Times. He has been named one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People in the world, and one of Rolling Stone’s top 100 agents of change. In his book, The Signal and The Noise, Silver shows how we can all develop better foresight in uncertain conditions by using information in smarter ways amid a noise of data. You can read more on his data-driven insights at the FiveThirtyEight blog. He tweets at @NateSilver538.

2. Simon Rogers, first data editor at Twitter

data journalism, GuardianSimon Rogers is a data journalist, writer, and speaker. He is the author of Facts are Sacred published by Faber & Faber and a new range of infographics for children’s books from Candlewick. In May 2013, he joined Twitter in San Francisco as the organization’s first Data Editor working to tell stories from billions of tweets. He moved on to work as Data Editor at Google News Lab. Simon also edited and created, an online data resource which publishes hundreds of raw data sets and encourages its users to visualize and analyze them. He has been a data journalist and editor at Google working with the graphics team to visualize and interpret huge data sets. He tweets at @smfrogers.

3. Ezra Klein, editor-in-chief at Vox

data journalism, Vox, Washington PostEzra Klein is the editor-in-chief at Vox. He has also been a columnist and blogger at The Washington Post and a policy analyst for MSNBC. His work focuses on domestic and economic policy making, as well as the political system. In 2010, Klein was named Blogger of the Year by both The Week magazine and the Sidney Hillman Foundation for his extensive coverage of the healthcare debate and Congress’ passage of the Affordable Care Act. Previously, Klein was an associate editor at The American Prospect and a columnist at Newsweek. A frequent commentator on domestic politics and policy, he has appeared on The Rachel Maddow Show, Charlie Rose, Real Time with Bill Maher, The McLaughlin Report, the Colbert Report, and many other programs. Read more of his work on Vox and Bloomberg. He tweets at @ezraklein.

4. Liliana Bounegru, managing director of the Digital Methods Initiative

data journalismLiliana Bounegru is Researcher and Managing Director of the Digital Methods Initiative at the University of Amsterdam. She is also studying data journalism as a Doctoral Candidate at the University of Groningen and the University of Ghent. Through her work as Data Journalism Program Lead at the European Journalism Centre (EJC) she established, coordinated, and co-edited The Data Journalism Handbook and, and coordinated the first edition of the Data Journalism Awards, the Doing Journalism with Data MOOC, the School of Data Journalism, and numerous trainings and conferences. She tweets at @bb_liliana, and more about her can be found at

5. Nick Evershed, data journalist for Guardian Australia

Nick Evershed is a data journalist for Guardian Australia. After a data journalismshort stint as a scientist he switched careers and now specializes in data-based investigations and multimedia. Nick uses data and analytics across a broad range of stories and issues including economics, politics, and culture. His website contains some of his most interesting work on data journalism. You can also follow his work for Guardian here. He has been recently nominated for the Best Individual Portfolio at the Data Journalism Awards. Nick tweets @NickEvershed.

6. Reginald Chua, data and innovation editor at Thomson Reuters

data journalismReginald Chua is data and innovation editor at Thomson Reuters, where he is responsible for developing the organization’s technology-enabled news gathering and presentation capabilities. Chua was editor-in-chief of the South China Morning Post and a deputy managing editor at the Wall Street Journal, where he worked for 16 years, first as a correspondent in Manila and then at the paper’s bureau in Hanoi, which he opened. He was the longest-serving editor of the Wall Street Journal’s Hong Kong-based Asian edition. A native of Singapore, Chua graduated with an MS in journalism from Columbia University and an AB in mathematics from the University of Chicago. He tweets at @reginalchua.

7. Steve Doig, Knight Chair at Arizona State University 

data journalismSteve Doig holds the Knight Chair, specializing in data journalism, at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism of Arizona State University. Before joining ASU in 1996, he was research editor of the Miami Herald. His data projects at The Herald and ASU have won the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service, the IRE Award, the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting, the George Polk Award, and other recognition. He consults actively with news organizations on complex data analysis stories, and has done data workshops in 18 countries. Steve tweets @sdoig and more about him can be found here.

At SocialCops, we launched Viz — Instagram for dynamic maps — the easiest way for journalists and researchers to build thematic maps. We currently have India, US, Hungary, Mexico, Italy, Belgium, Brazil, and South Africa state maps as well as India district, sub-district, and city maps on the platform. Leave your details here and we’ll keep you posted on all the new updates on Viz.