Mapping Urban In/justice I: Methods

Type: Paper
Sponsor Groups: Digital Geographies Specialty Group, Urban Geography Specialty Group
Poster #:
Day: 4/13/2018
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM (MDT)
Room: Iberville, Marriott, River Tower Elevators, 4th Floor
Organizers: Taylor Shelton, Dillon Mahmoudi
Chairs: Dillon Mahmoudi


How can mapping reveal previously unseen urban injustices or misunderstood phenomenon?

In 1973, David Harvey remarked that “mapping even more evidence of man’s patent inhumanity to man is counter-revolutionary in the sense that it allows the bleeding-heart liberal in us to pretend we are contributing to a solution when in fact we are not”. But rather than simply documenting these inhumanities, examples abound of mapping and data being used to actively challenge entrenched forms of inequality and the processes that produce them. Building on the power imbued in maps and data by powerful institutions, mapping is increasingly leveraged as a key means of drawing attention to, and developing new understandings of, urban inequality. While there is a persistent challenge in ensuring that cartographic visualization and quantitative data analysis do more than just “expiate guilt without our ever being forced to face the fundamental issues”, these tools and methods have just as much potential to advance a substantive, radical critique of the status quo as any other approach.

This session seeks papers that demonstrate the utility of not only thinking critically about the intersections of mapping and urban inequality, but actually doing mapping and data analysis in order to reveal and better understand the variety of social and spatial forms these injustices take in contemporary cities. While the utility of maps and data to bring attention to urban injustices is powerful in its own right, these kinds of representations can not only help to prove that such injustices exist, but also allow us to develop new ways of conceptualizing and addressing them.

Possible topics might include, but are not limited to:
- Use of novel datasets or visualization techniques to understand urban injustices
- Inequalities in housing, transportation, infrastructure, etc.
- Counter-mapping as an activist strategy
- Participatory and community-based mapping
- Mixed-methods mapping (e.g., mental and cognitive mapping, qualitative GIS)
- Mapping that redraws boundaries
- Power and il/legibility in mapping


Type Details Minutes Start Time
Presenter Leah Meisterlin*, Columbia University, Distanced: Remapping Access 20 8:00 AM
Presenter Ofurhe Igbinedion*, University of California - Davis, Mapping Implicit Bias in Urban Sidewalk Interactions 20 8:20 AM
Presenter Jerry Shannon*, University of Georgia, Kim Skobba, University of Georgia, Karen Tinsley, University of Georgia, Ayshia Ranjitsingh, University of Georgia, The app is just the start: Community data collection and action for affordable housing in Georgia 20 8:40 AM
Presenter Jonathan Cinnamon*, University of Exeter, DIY streetview mapping and the contested politics and possibilities of visibility 20 9:00 AM
Presenter Tim Hitchins*, Portland State University, Sachi Arakawa*, Portland State University, Getting Beyond ‘Neutral’: Building a Resistance Movement in the GIS Community 20 9:20 AM

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