UWS Transport Mapping Project – Collaborative IRIS Grant Project

By Kaye Shumack

14 April 2011

Six photos showing the tranport mapping stand, researchers in the field and a walking route map.

The spatial mapping methodology developed during Nold’s visit to UWS in February provides key geographical information systems (GIS) and mapping techniques intended to significantly enhance the Urban Research Centre’s spatial visualisation and participatory research capabilities, working with CCR members in a collaborative research framework that will inform further related research. This pilot project has resulted in a framework for further development that specifically addresses ways of discovering new knowledge about campus journeys by the UWS community.

Web-based technologies, emerging software and GPS are playing key roles in mapping and building urban flows as data sets available for analysing and understanding the use of urban spaces, as documented through hands-on, user-generated data. This can open up new spaces of understanding and suggest better use of cities. This research project seeks to develop and employ a sophisticated and innovative methodology that combines Nold’s expertise in developing community-based technologies for social innovation and sustainability, Crabtree’s knowledge of urban resilience, and Shumack’s previous work on community participation and engagement in design.

Christian Nold is one of the originators of the concept and practice of Locative Media, which straddles traditional art practice, community engagement, commercial technology and ethnographic research. Christian’s work has opened up the connection between community engagement and academic research, with a particular focus on community development, participatory urban planning and ideas of sustainability. This has been achieved though the development of unique and innovative methodologies that blend art, design and ethnographic approaches. His combination of sophisticated design, hands-on engagement and participatory methodology has been exemplary for this area of practice. As a result Christian’s work has inspired a generation of new media artists and social analysts to become involved in mapping as a practice for social change and academic research. Nold’s work focuses on working closely with communities that are seeking to address sustainability in their area, to develop participatory mapping and representational technologies that aim to help communities articulate and enact their desired interpretations of sustainability.

Urban Research Centre | Centre for Cultural Research | School of Communication Arts

Dr Louise Crabtree/ Ferne Edwards (Urban Research Centre) | Associate Professor Kaye Shumack /Jason Tuckwell (CCR / School of Communication Arts)