Community Mapping Workshop at OCBR Summer Institute (2009)




Friday, May 15, 2009 - 3:00pm


CMC Presenters: Charles Burnett, Wendy Anthony, Judith Arney, Hugh Stimson Community Presenter: Elaine Limbrick, Highlands Community Green Map Duration: 1h 30m 

Summary We had a group of 10 participants including folks from Vancouver Foundation, Sierra Club of BC, and the Cowichan Food Mapping Group. After a round of introductions and expectations, we launched into a discussion about community engagement using maps and mapping. We talked about how the practice of 'mapping' (communal creativity and story-telling) was the key - not necessarily the creation of any sort of map representation. That said, we discussed how having a paper map or a web map could be useful (for example, for community building, asset sharing, planning for change, discourse with city planners and politicians). We had a great discussion about the role of ART in making mapping a better process, and of course in making maps more interesting and effective. We discussed a range of examples, from artists taking community data and making the map in the case of the Islands in the Salish Sea (and also the VicWest Community Green Map - Jane Baigent, artist), to "art in the corners", like the James Bay Community Green Map, to thematic art in the Peninsula Playspaces Maps (kids art), and the Victoria and Region Community Green Map (First People's art). We had an all too brief look at the art on the Highlands Community Green Map. After that we started to form the rest of the workshop around understanding the process of gathering data and then making a map. We talked about the importance of inclusiveness, democracy and privileged information. Maps have power! But you can't include everything you collect - where do you draw the line? Much of this discussion was driven by looking at examples from the Highlands and Cowichan Valley projects. I showed some images from a very successful Cowichan Valley "mapping fair". And Elaine had some great words of wisdom about getting a strong steering committee together, and a coordinator willing to delegate tasks and get the group together regularly. We ended the workshop with Judith showing some examples of web-based mapping systems. She added nodes to the UVic map and showed the ES481 Restoration Ecology class mapping work - one sweet web map!. 

About this year's CBR Summer Institute: The 2nd Institute on Community-Based Research: Sharing Stories and Spaces Thursday, May 14 and Friday, May 15, 2009 at the University of Victoria The CBR Institute is a community-building and learning event that brings together community and academics from diverse walks of life. For those interested and engaged in community-campus research and partnerships that support health, food security, diversity and sustainability, this is for you! Along with the faculties of Education, Human and Social Development and Social Sciences, the Office of Community-Based Research, the Indigenous Affairs Office, Division of Continuing Studies, the Vancouver Foundation and the United Way of Greater Victoria, B.C. Healthy Communities and B.C Healthy Living Alliance, I would like to invite you to attend our Second Annual Institute on Community-Based Research. This Institute will feature a number of tours, workshops and opportunities for sharing and learning about community-based research and its impact on our communities. 

See below for Charles' flow map of a mapping project - photo by Wendy Anthony:

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