Doing Data with Drupal


“Data science” is a term few had heard five years ago, but today we see it everywhere. The gathering, sharing, publishing, analyzing and visualization of of the data our institutions  produce have become vital to government, business, journalism and civil society.  It’s a big deal-- McKinsey estimates that opening up data worldwide across seven industries will unlock more than $3 trillion dollars of economic value.  

Until recently, Drupal was thought of largely as a platform for publishing content, not data. However, 2014 proved that Drupal has a large role to play in this process, and in this session we will talk about how both Drupal’s core architecture and key modules and other customizations make it a powerful tool for open data publishing and data science. NuCivic created and leads the DKAN project, which is a Drupal distribution for data publishing. We will cover:

  • Recent Data publishing projects with Drupal
  • The storage of data, both as downloadable files and query-able, web service-ready tables
  • Data previews using DKAN’s recline.js integration
  • NuCivic’s new Visualization Entity module, for a standardized way of creating and sharing data visualizations in a Drupal site
  • Creating charts with DKAN and NVD3.js
  • Integrating DKAN with CartoDB, a powerful, open-source mapping tool
  • Open Data Schema Mapper: a new module that maps Drupal tokens to data publishing API schemas, for a powerful way to publish datasets to almost any common standard (such as Project Open Data, or the CKAN package API)
  • Case studies of DKAN implementation: The USDA National Agricultural Library
  • Brainstorming on future integrations between Drupal and popular data science and geospatial software

This is an intermediate-level session for both Drupal developers who want to work with data or DKAN specifically, and for data scientists who want to learn about leveraging Drupal for publishing their data and telling their stories.

Session Track

Site Building

Experience Level


Drupal Version