The Field Guide to Humanitarian Mapping
A free publication to help aid organizations use geospatial tools and methods in their work in emergencies. It’s published by MapAction
, an NGO that works specifically on mapping for humanitarian emergencies, deploying volunteer GIS professionals around the globe.
See also Mapping for Advocacy
, a collection of 10 case studies, and Maps for Advocacy
a more general introduction to geographical mapping techniques for NGOs. Both booklets are free to download. While not specifically oriented for NGOs, Making Maps
is an also excellent general primer. The Making Maps blog
hosts some interesting discussion as well.
40 Key Articles in Radical Geography
. Apropos of yesterday’s post
, a radical journal of geography, celebrates 40 years of publication by posting 40 favorite articles
from their archives online. Since 1969, Antipode
“dissenting scholarship that explores and utilizes key geographical ideas like space, scale, place, borders and landscape. It aims to challenge dominant and orthodox views of the world through debate, scholarship and politically-committed research, creating new spaces and envisioning new futures.”
Reading geography and maps as sites of power, deconstructing assumptions and political implications of maps. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Critical_cartography, Siam Mapped, Spaces of Capital
Using and creating maps to challenge power and facilitate social change, often characterized by an oppositional, anti-authoritarian politics. See An Atlas of Radical Cartography, NYC Guide to War Profiteers, Million Dollar Blocks.
Producing maps that challenge the dominant, mainstream narrative of a site or history, often from an explicitly political or activist perspective or from the point of view of historically marginalized communities. See DisOrientation Guide, CrashStat, A Threat to Peace, Notes for a People’s Atlas of Chicago.
Maps produced collaboratively by a geographically local community, often used to promote a social agenda. See Green Map Systems, Asset Mapping, Aboriginal Mapping Network.
The maps below visualize some of the impact of Israeli attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure in Lebanon and the Gaza Strip. About the designers:
“We are a group of Lebanese a group of Lebanese, Palestinian, and other activists who have worked together previously, mainly doing media and mapping work during the summer 2006 Israeli attack on Lebanon, and some of us later on advocacy and design for the reconstruction of Nahr el-Bared refugee camp. We have among us designers, architects, researchers, media people, and many other random activists. Although we are not an organised body or politically affiliated with a specific group, we are all pro-Palestinian.”
I’m sure I’ve heard this term in passing, but today in a meeting with a foundation that’s historically focused on grassroots groups in New York City it really hit home how gentrification is pushing people to further strata of the urban donut. In the selection of its cover graphic, the organization chose to zoom out, widen the map and refer not to “New York City,” but the “New York City Area.”
The org, it seems, is increasingly working with people who can’t afford to actually live in the City, but who still work or organize there — people living in northeastern New Jersey, north of the Bronx or east of Queens.
It sounds a bit like “Bay Area” vs “San Francisco.” Something larger than the property lines of the five boroughs but smaller than the tri-state region or New York metropolitan area.
. A Flickr set of information graphics created by Karl Gude, “sometimes in collaboration with staff, while Graphics Director at Newsweek
, the Associated Press
and The New York Daily News.
Seeing them all together really calls out the collage of visualization techniques: photo montage, 3D computer rendering, painted and vector illustration, maps, all mixed in with charts, graphs and typography.
Visualizing Information for Advocacy: An Introduction to Information Design is a booklet I wrote and designed to introduce advocacy organizations to basic principles and techniques of information design. It’s full of examples of interesting design from groups around the world in a variety of media and forms. It has tips, excercises, and even recommended Free Software packages to help polish up your graphics.
I worked with the Tacitcal Tech collective who provided editorial feedback and helped track down reproduction rights for the images. They’re also coordinating printing and distribution to NGOs. The project was funded by the OSI Information Program. The booklet is Creative Commons licensed.
Download the full booklet at http://backspace.com/infodesign.pdf
. Display pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities from 1995-2005 on a Google Map of New York City.
. “The Los Angeles Police Department announced a mapping program used by its anti-terrorism bureau to identity likely terrorist breeding grounds in Muslim areas.” What next, checkpoints?
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