Mapping as a Tool for Communities
This paper aims to analyze mapping as a process and as a tool for communities. In order to understand maps and mapping in the present and in the future, maps and mapping must be contextualized within a powered past and an understanding of maps as tools for mapmakers to construct or reconstruct power. Next, the author discusses the methods of community based mapping in order to understand mapping as a process and a relationship between communities and mapmakers. Furthermore, these processes of mapping are ways to build communities, negotiate power, and understand environment. Finally, the author argues that there are lessons for mapping with communities based the relationship between the mapmakers and the communities. Through these discussions, the author argues that mapmakers should evaluate their engagement with communities and strive to build capacity for mapping within the community. The ways that mapping is done with the community should be ways that build stronger communities, challenge power, and strengthen relationships between communities and their environments. Community based mapping is a tool to construct community based narratives and reconstruct power in the hands of the community members for the benefit of themselves and their community.