About StatSilk

StatSilk develops software (desktop, web-based and mobile apps) for creating user-friendly interactive maps and visualizations using your own data. Its first product, StatPlanet, was used to automatically visualize the entire World Bank public database of more than 3000 indicators - and it won the World Bank's Apps for Development Competition. This led to the development of a range of products catering to different needs. 


StatSilk also provides consultancy services, mainly to government agencies and UN organizations, with respect to improving data systems for evidence-informed decision making. Our specialties are data integration and visualization services and products, as well as analysis of the technical, social and organizational aspects of improving data systems at different levels.


StatSilk's clientele spans a broad range of industries and companies of all sizes, from small NGOs to some of the world’s largest companies. It empowers organizations to better communicate and disseminate their data, and empowers users of data by providing them with the tools to better explore and analyse the data according to their needs. Originally launched as a non-profit initiative, StatSilk’s business model now balances commercial aspirations with a philosophy that supports open data and data visualization for international development.

Our clients and users include multinational companies such as Accenture, Cisco, Dell, eBay, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Samsung; intergovernmental organizations such as OECD, European Commission, World Bank and various UN organizations; government agencies in 30 countries, such as the USA Department of Homeland Security; and many of the world's leading universities such as Cambridge, Harvard, MIT, Oxford, Stanford and Yale.


StatSilk is based in Melbourne, Australia. It was founded by Frank van Cappelle in 2009 and officially launched in 2011. The StatPlanet software has a longer history and has been under development since 2006. From 2008 to 2010 it was established in Paris as a research project at the UNESCO International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP) to improve the accessibility of research findings. As part of this project, the software was used to visualize and monitor education quality indicators for Southern and Eastern Africa as part of the SACMEQ inter-governmental research programme. This provided the opportunity for critical feedback from a highly talented and international group of researchers and statisticians.


Frank is a regularly invited speaker on data visualization at international conferences and workshops. In addition to his visualization work he is an international consultant working in the fields of education and international development, and has worked in this capacity for UNESCO and UNICEF across five continents. He also does pro-bono consultancy work for a number of non-profit organizations and government agencies.

Training sessions and workshops are conducted by GIS and StatPlanet expert John Grenfell, who is based in the UK.


Business Man Reading a Newspaper

StatSilk's StatPanet software has been featured in the New York Times, the Guardian, Google Magazine Think Quarterly, Australian newspaper The Age, Austrian newspaper Wirtschaftsblatt and Dutch newspaper Het Financieele Dagblad.

Business model

Circe Team Shape.

StatSilk employs a unique business model which seeks to promote the use of data visualization by non-profit and government organizations and organizations in low income countries. It also aims to promote the use of visualization for research and educational purposes. The business model is based on the following five pillars:

  1. Visualize open data: Increasingly government institutions and organizations are releasing data free of charge. Through StatSilk’s StatWorld and the first-prize winning StatPlanet World Bank, interactive visualizations of thousands of indicators can be explored and analyzed. Lack of Internet connectivity does not need to be a barrier, as there are desktop and web versions.
  2. Enable anyone to freely and easily produce interactive data visualizations: StatPlanet, StatPlanet Lite and StatTrends are free for any kind of use, both commercial and non-commercial. They can be redistributed and published online without restriction.
  3. Support data visualization for international development: Data visualization can play an important role in international development by facilitating the monitoring and evaluation of key indicators and benchmarks. All StatSilk software, both desktop and web versions, are completely free for use by local organisations and government institutions in low income countries and countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. StatPlanet versions for many of these countries are available for download. For maps of other countries, please see the free shapefile maps section.
  4. Support data visualization by non-profit entities: The desktop versions of StatPlanet Plus and StatTrends Plus are free for use by non-profit entities, such as government agencies, educational institutions and charities, as well as for personal use. The web versions of StatPlanet Plus and StatTrends Plus have reduced license costs for non-profit entities. See also the license terms.
  5. Support evidence-based decision making: Improvements to StatSilk software are made with evidence-based decision making in mind - building increasingly powerful tools to visually explore and analyze data according to your needs. Paid customizations to the software are included in the next software update so that everyone can benefit. User feedback is welcomed and many suggestions for improvement have been incorporated over the past few years. Customizations which are prioritized are those that are most likely to benefit current and future users.

Feel free to contact us for more information or to request a quote for software customizations.


Business details

ABN (Australian Business Number): 56482517109
Location: O'Grady st., Carlton North, Melbourne, 3054 VIC, Australia

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