Nael Shiab - Data journalist

Map of Montreal and position of Airbnb's listings.

The exponential growth of AirBnb in Canadian cities created many problems that the municipal, provincial and federal governments have been unable to control.

For this investigation, I coded a Node scraper that connected to the AirBnb's API. My script retrieved all listings for entire homes or apartments in 16 Canadian cities.

For the data analysis, I teamed with my colleague Valerie Ouellet. It showed that Montreal was the most impacted city in Canada. Hundreds of entire homes were commercially rented in residential zones, worsening a housing crisis. We also discovered "mega hosts", managing hundreds of listings across the country.

I coded the project, including the two dataviz. I also wrote the story.

After our publication, the Quebec government announced new regulations to control AirBnb and similar platforms.

Radial chart showing the maximum daily temperature in Montreal.

In nordic countries with harsh winters like Canada, it's sometimes hard for the public to realize the Earth is warming. That's why I decided to do a story on how the coldest season is warming up too.

I coded a Node web scraper that scanned thousands of weather stations across Canada. When a station had data on snow cover for at least 40 years, my script downloaded all the data available for this specific station. At the end this process, I was working with a file of 16 million rows. I analyzed the trends per decade for each major city in Canada with Python scripts.

The resulting publication is a project with four dataviz and stories of people working in industries impacted by the decreasing snow cover. I coded the project, including the dataviz and wrote the story as well.

Winter is an important part of Canadian identity and this project was one of our most read.

Data visualization of voters intentions.

CBC/Radio-Canada did a partnership with the non-profit Vox Pop Labs to realize a huge survey in Quebec during the last provincial election. More than 220,000 voters answered a serie of questions.

I analyzed their answers and coded this interactive dataviz to explain the outcome of the election.

Universities: pay more for less? (in French)

September 4, 2018
Data visualization of the increase in special fees billed to students.

The Quebec Ministry of Education refused to provide me the detailled financial data of public universities. However, I found a source whom accepted to send me 20 years worth of data.

My analysis and my interactive story showed how universities kept adding special fees to the students bills, while the students had less access to professors.

Military exports: The Great Canadian Hypocrisy (in French)

February 5, 2017
Data visualization of the Canadian military exports for the last 20 years.

Canada has banned weapons exports to countries where they could potentially be used to violate human rights. To test this regulation, I compiled all the data on military goods exports for the last 25 years, then cross referenced them with academic databases on human rights violations.

My analysis showed that Canada exported a third of its military goods to violent dictatorships. The story was used in Parliament debates.