Children's Maps in GIS: A Tool for Communicating Outdoor Experiences in Urban Planning

Children's Maps in GIS: A Tool for Communicating Outdoor Experiences in Urban Planning

Kerstin Nordin (Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden) and Ulla Berglund (Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden)
DOI: 10.4018/jicthd.2010040101
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Since 2002 the authors have successively developed “Children’s Maps in GIS”, a method for children’s participation in spatial planning. Their studies show that 10-15 year-olds are capable of reading maps and using a GIS-application for communicating their interests in a stable and useful manner. The purpose of this article is to discuss the first stages of implementation in a real world project, in relation to ICT. The authors report experiences from a Swedish municipality using Children’s Maps in GIS in a survey with over 600 children as part of a comprehensive planning process and give examples of how data can be visualized. A significant digital divide between different parts of the administration is noted. In the ongoing development into an Internet version of the method the authors aim to increase the access to the GIS-application and develop standard procedures for categorizing and analyzing data.
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This paper reports on research carried out within the discipline of Landscape architecture although the theoretical framework shows an interdisciplinary approach including planning theory, social theory as well as theory of environmental psychology, geography and GIScience.

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