Participatory Mapping/GIS 2017conference

In 2016 Greg Brown joined California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly) as Department Head of Natural Resources Management & Environmental Sciences after serving in multiple academic leadership positions at the University of Queensland, Central Washington University, University of South Australia, Alaska Pacific University, and Green Mountain College. Greg is a leading international researcher in participatory mapping research methods (PPGIS/PGIS/VGI). His participatory mapping applications include forest planning, national park planning, assessment of ecosystem services, coastal and marine areas planning, and urban parks and open space planning. He founded the Landscape Values and PPGIS Institute to facilitate global research and communication about participatory spatial planning methods.

In 2017 is is organising world first conference/colloquium about Participatory mapping/GIS for academics, government agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), students, information technology professionals, and anyone interested in advancing knowledge about participatory mapping methods.

The goal of Participatory Mapping/GIS 2017 is to bring together an international community of academics, planners/managers, and practitioners to (1) identify state of knowledge in participatory mapping methods, (2) to learn new mapping applications and technology, and to (3) identify best practices, standards, and future research needs.

If you are interested in Participatory Mapping or Participatory GIS you should not miss this event.


Participatory methods: PGIS – Participatory GIS

Participatory GIS is the broadest category, which the author analyzes. One can find here methods called participatory GIS, online mapping (Bugs, Granell, Fonts, Huerta, & Painho, 2010; Kyem & Saku, 2009; Peng, 2001), crowdsourcing (Lundin, Kovacic, & Poggiali, 2012), mobile GIS, Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI) (Brown, Kelly, & Whitall, 2013; Goodchild, 2007; Tulloch, 2008), neocartography(Cartwright, 2012) and others.

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Participatory methods: multimedia mapping

Multimedia mapping is close to the traditional method of transmitting information in spoken form and is suitable for both internal and external participants. Method increases community cohesion and capacity through new knowledge and skills. It includes questionnaires, interviews, participatory video, sound recordings, traditional music, language, or a description of the area through the stories of tribal elders. Created multimedia is subsequently connected to a digital map that can be stored online and offline mode.

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Participatory methods: grassroots mapping

Grassroots mapping can be described as a low cost method of obtaining aerial photographs. As a carrier sensor it uses either a balloon filled with helium (if the wind speed is no more than 10 km/h) or kite flying (at higher wind speeds) (, 2010). It could be argued that this is merely a variation on the UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles), however, this approach is more useful for small community projects, mainly for its simplicity and low operating costs.

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Participatory methods: GPS Mapping

GPS mapping is one of the methods that already require sophisticated technical tools and technical literacy. In this case, at least the GPS unit and a device for storing and visualizing data – mostly computer. GPS unit can record location in the form of points or lines.

This methods belongs to the group of methods, that places greater knowledge and skill barriers at the user. GPS mapping may be used for the collection of new information (, 2013) or to verify information obtained during some of the less technology-intensive methods (Ground mappingSketch mapping or Transect Walk) (Panek & Vlok, 2013).

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Participatory methods: Participatory 3D Modelling (P3DM)

Participatory 3D modeling is a method of creating and using 3D models of relief based on information from a topographic maps in community planning. The models are formed from paperboard or for the wire patterns, which are then decorated. Individual labels are mostly in the form of tack for point features, coloured strings for linear elements and colour painting for surface elements (IFAD, 2009).

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Mapping Ephemeralities / Ephemeral Cartographies workshop

Mapping Ephemeralities / Ephemeral Cartographies is a workshop organized by the International Cartographic Association (ICA) Commissions on Maps and Society & Art and Cartography (Rio de Janeiro, August 21-22, 2015). It will take place prior to the 27th International Cartographic Convention (August 23-28th, 2015). Thanks to the ICA Research Scholarship I will be able to participate in both the workshop as well as the conference.  Continue reading