How to create a live-updating choropleth map

No matter if you want to show in which election districts the results come in on election night or update cases of the flu per county, live-updating maps are a convenient way. Datawrapper allows you to link your map to an external dataset. Every time the data set updates, the map will update, too – without the need to republish it.

👉 To create a live-updating chart or table, visit this article.
👉 To create a live-updating symbol map, visit this article.

This article explains how to create live-updating choropleth maps.


First, create a choropleth map with Datawrapper. To do so, go to, select Choropleth map and then choose or upload the map you want to fill with your data. To learn more about how to create choropleth maps, visit our article "...".


Click Proceed to go to step 2: Add your data. Now scroll all the way to the bottom until you find the option to link an external dataset (if you don't find it, make sure you're in the Upload tab):

To learn more about the second option – importing a Google Spreadsheet – read How to connect your choropleth map to Google Sheets


Now, Datawrapper asks you to enter an URL that links to your CSV file. Once you do that, it will check the CSV and tell you if it's valid or not.

👉 Make sure that your dataset contains the correct spelling of the map keys (e.g. "Czechia" instead of "Czech Republic" for our world map). To prepare the CSV, you can download a table with all the possible keys for your map in the second tab, Match.

You'll see two options to link to an external dataset, using the Datawrapper server and serving your data file directly. To decide which one is best for your use case, visit our article "Options for live-updating visualizations".

You can also select if you want to use the Datawrapper server or serve your data file directly. To learn about the difference between the two, visit our article "...".

Click Connect and you'll see your data appear in the table to the right. 

Note that you can't make any changes to connected data. You can read what data you imported, but you can't edit it.


And that's it! Now you can proceed to step 3: Visualize. To learn how to tweak the colors, color key, title, etc. of your choropleth map, visit our article "Customizing your choropleth map".