A tale of 2020 in 20 McKinsey charts

This year, we launched a new series to highlight our best charts and data visualizations—the ones that deserved lives of their own outside the articles they were originally created for. Every weekday, we post a selection from one of our highly skilled data-visualization editors to our collection page, Charting the Path to the Next Normal. As we look back at the year that was, these daily charts tell a story about our changing world, from the early days of lockdowns and a tumultuous summer to ending the year on a hopeful note. While uncertainty remains, and each chart in isolation offers but one lens on the landscape, the themes emerging from the collection as a whole provide unique insight into the many disruptions 2020 visited on us.

The socioeconomically vulnerable are more likely than the general population to lack testing, to contract coronavirus, and to develop a severe case--or die from it.
 Certain conditions are tied to worse outcomes for COVID-19.
Looking ahead, incidence of age- and lifestyle-related diseases is expected to rise while many infectious diseases could  decrease significantly.
As of April 15, 191 governments had closed K-12 schools in response to the coronavirus.
 Taking action now could increase 2030 GDP by $13 trillion relative to the 'do nothing' scenario.
Less than 10 percent of survey respondents believe carsharing, ridesharing, or shared micromobility to be safe.
European consumers in lockdown expect to increase their purchases of in-store grocery items and online entertainment, but not much else.
 Six ways technology contributed to Asia's response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Across countries, economic-stimulus responses to the COVID-19 crisis outsize those to the 2008 financial crisis.
Assuming a COVID-19-scale epidemic is a 50-year event, the return on preparedness investment is clear, even if it only partly mitigates the damage.
When put into monetary terms, the pandemic's negative impact on well-being in April was up to 3.5 times the losses  experienced in GDP.
Resilient companies did better at the outset of the downturn and afterward.
Commitment to innovation has decreased as companies work through the COVID-19 crisis and focus on short-term issues.
Executives say their companies responded to a range of COVID-19-related changes much more quickly than they thought possible before the crisis.
Leadership behaviors have changed in importance for consumer and retail companies since the pandemic began.
Government spending on renewable energy and energy efficiency has been shown to create more jobs than spending on fossil fuels.
The height, curve, and peak of influenza rates can vary each year.

For more on the pandemic and the world’s response to it, see McKinsey Global Publishing’s full collection of insights on the next normal beyond the coronavirus.

To get a roundup of these charts delivered weekly to your inbox, sign up for The Week in Charts newsletter at McKinsey.com/subscriptions.

Our data-visualization editors, Richard Johnson, Matt Perry, and Jonathon Rivait, created all the charts featured in this collection and choose the best of their creations daily for our Charting the Path to the Next Normal series. This collection was assembled by Shubham Bassi, Mike Borruso, Torea Frey, Marcelo Garza, Arun Gupta, Julie Macias, Janet Michaud, Christine Nguyen, Kanika Punwani, Charmaine Rice, and Nathan Wilson.

This page is just part of our full year-end series celebrating the best of McKinsey Global Publishing in 2020. See the full collection at, 2020 year in review: Highlights from our publishing.