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From crowdsourced geographic information to participatory citizen science - exploitation  or empowerment?
 

From crowdsourced geographic information to participatory citizen science - exploitation  or empowerment?

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Slides from presentation at Leicester Geography seminar March 2014, which is based on earlier discussion in a 'thinking and doing digital mapping' workshop in June 2013 in ...

Slides from presentation at Leicester Geography seminar March 2014, which is based on earlier discussion in a 'thinking and doing digital mapping' workshop in June 2013 in http://blog.digitalcartography.eu/2013/03/26/june-workshop-thinking-and-doing-digital-mapping/ as part of Charting the Digital project http://digitalcartography.eu/

The presentation discusses Volunteered Geographic Information (crowdsourced information) and Citizen Science, using the philosophy of technology of Albert Borgmann.

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    From crowdsourced geographic information to participatory citizen science - exploitation  or empowerment? From crowdsourced geographic information to participatory citizen science - exploitation  or empowerment? Presentation Transcript

    • From crowdsourced geographic information to participatory citizen science - exploitation or empowerment? Muki Haklay @mhaklay Extreme Citizen Science group @ucl_excites
    • (cc) Development Seed
    • Source: Kate Jones, UCL/ZSL see http://www.ibats.org.uk/
    • Outline • Ways of thinking through technology • Albert Borgmann’s philosophy of technology – The device paradigm – Focal practices – Natural, Cultural and Technological Information • Cartography, Geographical Information Systems and the limits of technological information • Are crowdsourcing/neogeography/participatory mapping making any difference?
    • Thinking through technology ©Stock.XCHNG
    • ©Stock.XCHNG
    • ©Stock.XCHNG
    • Borgmann’s philosophy of technology
    • The Device Paradigm (cc) CJ Sorg©Stock.XCHNG
    • (cc) Ed & Eddie
    • (cc) Ed & Eddie (cc) 1950sUnlimited
    • Focal things and practices ©Stock.XCHNG
    • Focal things and practices ©Stock.XCHNG
    • Natural information: about reality ©Stock.XCHNG
    • Cultural information: for reality ©Stock.XCHNG
    • Technological information: as reality (cc) Kanko*
    • Core concepts • Device paradigm – the tendency of technology to replace efficiency and automation for meaningful human activities • Focal things and practices – deeply meaningful artefacts and practices • Natural information: information about reality • Cultural information: information for reality • Technological information: replacing reality
    • NASA 24/12/1968
    • Source: Eric Fischer Flickr – Locals (blue) vs. Tourists (red)
    • Digiplace: filtered by software & people
    • 27 Limits of technological information • “A map that is rapidly assembled through a sequence of points and clicks is far less deeply understood and less thoughtfully crafted than one that is laboriously drawn on a table” (p. 176) • “If you imagine yourself in control of a perfect GIS, nothing any longer presents itself with any authority. Anything might as well be an impediment to inquiry” (p. 177) Source: Borgmann, A. (1999) Holding On to Reality, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago.
    • The story so far … • GIS and digital mapping work towards creation of technological information – information as reality • They provide an example for the device paradigm: prioritising efficiency and reductionist functionality over wider social practices and activities • Is there an alternative to this force and direction?
    • Crowdsourced geographic information (VGI) • The wide use of tools such as GPS, smartphone and the Web by professional and non-professional participants to create and disseminate geographic information (VGI – Goodchild 2007)
    • Volunteer rainfall observer Rick Grocke checks the rain gauge at Tanami Downs cattle station in the Northern Territory of Australia WMO–No. 919 Audubon Cal. Citizen science • Scientific activities in which non- professional scientists volunteer to participate in data collection, analysis and dissemination of a scientific project.
    • Citizen Science: iSpot
    • (cc) Urbanwide - flickr (cc) Nick black
    • OpenStreetMap – Map Kibera
    • More information at http://publiclaboratory.org
    • Noise mapping Mapping for Change LCY noise mapping study at http://bit.ly/LCYNoise
    • 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00 00:00 dBA Sound Readings - No Flights 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00 00:00 dBA Sound Readings - Normal Flights Source: Wikimedia Eyjafjallajökull – April 2010
    • Mapping for Change
    • June 2012 June 2012
    • July 2012 July 2012
    • August 2012 August 2012
    • October 2012 October2012
    • Forest monitoring Jerome Lewis, ExCiteS
    • Lewis et al. (2007). “Logging in the Congo Basin: What hope for indigenous peoples’ resources and their environments?”. In: Indigenous Affairs 4/06, pp. 8–15. Lewis et al. (2012). “Accessible technologies and FPIC: independent monitoring with forest communities in Cameroon”. In: Biodiversity and culture: exploring community protocols, rights and consent (PLA 65), pp. 151–165.
    • Summary • The Device Paradigm can be identified in most of the major digital mapping activities and services • Values are well embedded in technology and many times operate against focal practices and things • However, alternatives can be developed but they require special attention and action
    • Open questions • How does the device paradigm of technology limits what we can do with mapping? • Which focal practices can we create and support without falling into technical fixes? • What is the value in these small scale activities of ‘heroic mapping’ (Ed Parsons’ term)?
    • Credits Support for the research kindly provided by: UCL Graduate School Research Fund ESRC ‘Conserving Biodiversity That Matters: The Value of Brownfield Sites’ project RGS/IBG Small Research Grant UrbanBuzz: Building Sustainable Communities (HEFCE) London Sustainability Exchange (LSx) London 21 Sustainability Network EPSRC Challenging Engineering Award ‘Extreme Citizen Science’ EPSRC Adaptable Suburbs project EU FP7 EveryAware project Google Research Awards Amazon Web Services Education Grants Our special thanks to the participants and the communities that work with us And to our partners: Royal Geographical Society, ESRI, Helveta and U-Blox
    • • Follow us: – http://www.ucl.ac.uk/excites – Twitter: @UCL_ExCiteS – Blog: http://uclexcites.wordpress.com