Every year, the World Bank issues its World Development Report (WDR) – a significant investigation into a topic of global importance.

When the economists responsible for creating the 2012 WDR on Gender were having difficulty explaining complex concepts in an easily understood fashion, they asked for help. Harkness Design teamed up with strategic thinker Joey Coleman of Design Symphony and statistician Cyrus Stahlberg of Cymetrics to help them fashion a cohesive, accurate visual narrative.

  • Table 3.1 Missing Women
  • Foundational Graphic 7.1-2
  • Figure 1.1 Gender Balance
  • Different occupations2
  • Figure 6.4 brain and brawn
  • Income poverty
  • Figure 3 Visits to doctor
  • time spent4
  • Female Labor Force Participation


After getting up to speed on the 300+ page report and the underlying research and analysis, we created a series of information graphics that would make the findings of the report come to life. Using a series of custom graphics built on a consistent design foundation, we were able to create dozens of visuals that explain detailed and complex issues in a clear and concise format.

We also designed a master Collateral Strategy Design framework visual that serves to anchor the various elements of the report findings and guide readers through the 300+ page treatise.