Visualization of a pandemic: Covid-19

In the wake of the Corona pandemic, the preparation of statistical data for information purposes took on a new significance. What had previously rather been the preserve of specialist scientific publications now had to be presented for a mass audience. Svea Hansohn made this the subject of her thesis.

HMKW graduate Svea Hansohn at the exhibition of her Bachelor thesis in HMKW's own exhibition space Galerie Hundert.

HMKW graduate Svea Hansohn at the exhibition of her Bachelor thesis in HMKW's own exhibition space Galerie Hundert.

StudentSvea Hansohn
Department:Design, Campus Cologne

Prof. Dr. Markus Schröppel, Dipl.-Des. Ina Kalvelage

Degree:Bachelor of Arts

Summer semester 2021

At first glance, statistical data are nothing more than that: numbers and units in tables that are primarily used by experts in the respective field of study. In the face of the global Corona pandemic, Svea Hansohn, a student of the study program B.A. Graphic Design and Visual Communication at HMKW Cologne, asked herself: What can designers do to help communicate information and data in a comprehensible way? More concretely, how can a pandemic be visualized? For her thesis, she also chose another focus of inquiry: What does human resilience have to do with all of this? Because whether consciously or unconsciously, everyone has been forced to deal with the issue of resilience in the face of new challenges within the last 18 months.
To illustrate the issue of the pandemic, information design and visualization can help create an overview and bring content together in a compact way. Data can be contextualized and thus interpreted. This foundation forms the understanding for further insights and perspectives on the given situation.
To stand out from the sober infographics we encounter every day in the media, Svea Hansohn has designed seven infographics, each covering a topic area, including global infection figures and vaccination coverage. Using an international comparison between six countries, one of the infographics also shows the results of a survey she conducted herself on how resilient society is in times of crisis and during the current pandemic.
The infographics are based on data from January 2020 to March 2021. A matching atlas maps the infographics with its own articles and information so that the graphics can be put into additional context.


Despite the pandemic, Svea Hansohn's bachelor thesis fortunately could be exhibited in the HMKW's own exhibition space Galerie Hundert, not far from the HMKW campus in Cologne, in the summer of 2021. Under the hygiene regulations druing that time interested visitors were able to examine the work and the atlas as well as the infographics with all their details.


Please find further information on this project on


Graphics and photos: Svea Hansohn