Blog Archives

Imag(in)ing Everyday Geographies: A case study of Andrew Buckles’ Why Wait? Project

This article introduces an interdisciplinary collaboration that brings together sympathetic trends in qualitative geographic visualization (from the perspective of one author who is a geographer) and contemporary generative artistic practices (from the perspective of the other author, who is an artist and theorist)—attempting to represent a diverse array of creative and multi-modal data through generative and participatory digital methods. We present how this convergence expands categories of meaning, allowing us to explore experiential/embodied as well as creative/imaginative engagements with everyday geographies distinct to a digital age. The article mediates on the idea of mapping the imagination and the ways we imagine quotidian spaces, as well as possibilities for new methods for the analysis and representation of spatial and emotional complexity. We particularly explore strategies of integrating multiple technologies and multiple-modes of representation for mapping and re-mapping complexities of social and creative living in order to help provide alternate ways to imagine, represent and engage different forms of embodied and imaginative geographies. This article presents a case study with the artist Andrew Buckles, in Seattle, Washington, correlating representational and participatory digital data including geospatial, temporal, audio, video as well as electroencephalography readings from brainwave sensors.

Geovisualizing Childrens transport exclusion: Childrens Afterschool Activity Opportunities in the Buffalo Metropolitan Area

This research investigates current and potentially desired opportunities available for children’s afterschool activities in the U.S. Buffalo metropolitan area. By analyzing and geographically visualizing travel paths, excluded children’s activity space, and existing activity opportunities in the 3D view using GIS, the study looks at how children’s activity opportunities are limited by any socio-spatial factors such as racial distribution,
median income, current transportation system and geographical distribution of activity opportunity. Especially, it focuses on finding out if there have been children’s unequal activity opportunities between the city and the suburban area. There is an abundance of research that has looked at accessibility to opportunities based on the transportation system. However, only few studies have focused on children’s mobility even though their mobility is typically constrained and tied to those of adults in the household. With more direct engagement with children and representation of their activity space in GIS, this article is intended to discuss transport exclusion and related socio-spatial constraints from the perspective of children.

Extending the Qualitative Capabilities of GIS: Computer-Aided Qualitative GIS

A number of approaches for integrating GIS and qualitative research have emerged in recent years, as part of a resurgence of interest in mixed methods research in geography. These efforts to integrate qualitative data and qualitative analysis techniques complement a longstanding focus in GIScience upon ways of handling qualitative forms of spatial data and reasoning in digital environments, and extend engagements with ‘the qualitative’ in GIScience to include discussions of research methodologies. This article contributes to these emerging qualitative GIS methodologies by describing the structures and functions of ‘computer-aided qualitative GIS’ (CAQ-GIS), an approach for storing and analyzing qualitative, quantitative, and geovisual data in both GIS and computer aided data analysis software. CAQ-GIS uses modified structures from conventional desktop GIS to support storage of qualitative data and analytical codes, together with a parallel coding and analysis process carried out with GIS and a computer-aided data analysis software package. The inductive mixed methods analysis potential of CAQ-GIS is demonstrated with examples from research on children’s urban geographies.

Computer-Aided Qualitative GIS: A Software-Level Integration of Qualitative Research and GIS

A growing number of geographers are conducting mixed methods research involving the integration of quantitative and qualitative data in GIS. Contributing to these efforts, this chapter describes software-level modifications that adapt GIS to enable inclusion of qualitative data as well as interpretive codes associated with these data. These innovations enable GIS to serve as a platform for dynamically integrating quantitative and qualitative data throughout the analysis process. Further, this chapter shows how GIS may be meshed with computer-aided qualitative analysis software (CAQDAS) to support inductive interpretive analysis. The value of GIS is in its ability to represent both qualitative and quantitative data along with their spatial information, and the value of CAQDAS lies in its ability to provide better means of storing, managing, and analyzing qualitative data. The system described here enables researchers to take advantage of all of these capabilities as they are working with multiple forms of data. Further, the linkage between GIS and CAQDAS that I have developed enables researchers to carry out many different forms of analysis, such as exploratory data visualization, conventional forms of spatial analysis, grounded theory, and other approaches.

Community through the eyes of children: blending child-centered research and qualitative geovisulization

Community is an ambiguous concept, and the meanings of community as a subject of study have received a great deal of attention across various disciplines. This paper discusses how children’s diverse meanings of community shape and are shaped by the social, cultural, and physical environments of their everyday lives. To explore these meanings I combine principles of child-centered research and qualitative geovisualization into a research methodology. I demonstrate that this integration displays the transformative nature of qualitative analysis and visualization to support interpretive analysis of various forms of qualitative and spatial data together, and offers us a hybrid methodological framework for gaining insights into the diverse meanings of community held by the children. The main case study is drawn from a multi-year research collaboration called the Children’s Urban Geography (ChUG), in which I participated along with children who lived in a relatively poor but emerging multi-cultural Hispanic neighborhood in Buffalo, NY.

Code clouds: Qualitative geovisualization of geotweets

The popularity of geotagged social media has provided many research opportunities for geographers and GIScientists in the digital age. This article reviews innovative approaches to studying spatially linked social media, and applies lessons taken from qualitative GIS and geographic visualization to improve these approaches. I introduce the idea of “code clouds” as a potential technique for the qualitative geovisualization of spatial information. Code clouds can depict and visualize analytic codes, or codes identifying key ideas and themes, that are generated through digital qualitative research. Rather than transforming qualitative forms of data into categories or numbers, code clouds attempt to preserve and represent the context of data as a visualized outcome of qualitative analysis. Professor Jung use examples from an exploratory case study of geotweets in King County, WA, to demonstrate how code clouds can be applied to the production of meanings through qualitative geovisualization.

Strategic Assimilation or Creation of Symbolic Blackness: Middle-Class Blacks in Suburban Contexts

The black middle class has been the subject of a great deal of scholarly inquiry. Recently, scholars have directed their attention towards understanding how middle class blacks negotiate their racial identity. Some contend that blacks engage in strategic assimilation, working and sometimes living alongside members of the dominant group, while simultaneously maintaining social ties with members of their own racial group. To examine changes in the size and composition of the black middle class in various suburban contexts comparisons were made of selected demographic data from 1990 and 2000. The purpose of the study is to see if middle class blacks are engaging in strategic assimilation. The findings reveal that the size of the black middle class increased between 1990 and 2000 and that demographic differences exist between members of the black middle class based upon whether or not they reside inside or outside of the suburbs. The findings support the contention that middle class blacks are not engaging in strategic assimilation.

Reconsidering wealth, status, and power: Critical Demography and the measurement of racism

Sociologists have a long tradition of studying the effects of differentials in indicators of socioeconomic status by race. In fact, since Duncan’s classic study on poverty, differences on such indicators have often been considered a measure of the “cost of being black.” This paper employs the new paradigm in the study of population, Critical Demography, to develop a measure of racism based upon estimates of the differentials in wealth, status and power. Specifically, the study asks three questions: (1) How is racism measured relative to wealth, status and power in the United States? (2) Based upon this measure, how has racism changed over time? and (3) What are the theoretical implications of this measure for the study of race and ethnicity in sociology, demography and the social sciences in general? The findings provide evidence of Mertonian serendipity: once macro-level measures of racism are controlled, blacks actually exceed whites in levels of education, income and housing values. The paper concludes with a discussion of the policy implications of measuring racism from a Critical Demography perspective.

Racism, Rodeos, and the Misery Industries of Louisiana

Racism is a multilevel and multidimensional system whereby minority groups are oppressed and scapegoated by the dominant group. Claims that America has become a post-racial society notwithstanding, manifestations of racism are all around us, especiallyin the state of Louisiana. Louisiana is home to some of the poorest, and the leasteducated citizens in the nation. The state is also the site of one of the country’s mostnotorious prisons. Angola, a former—and present penal—plantation, is a majority black prison where the inmate ‘rodeo’ provides annual entertainment for largely whiteaudiences and hundreds of thousands of dollars to supplement services for prisoners thatcould arguably be paid for in less dehumanizing ways. White racial frame is a useful paradigm for understanding the linkages between mass incarceration, the exploitation ofthe Black body, the miseducation of Black youth, as well as the persistent racialeconomic inequality in Louisiana and in US society as a whole. We extend the idea of white racial frame further by introducing a concept we call “bridges to benefits”. Bridges to benefits are networks of white privilege, which flow between institutions, such as education, the economy, and the law, which involve capitalizing on the misery of Blacks while simultaneously protecting white supremacy.

Non-Married Women and Black Ethnicity: An Analysis of the Likelihood of Homeownership

The number of non-married women is on the rise in America and these women are making their presence known, especially where homeownership is concerned. Non-married women are among the fastest growing segment of first time home buyers. Despite these recent trends, few studies have examined the determinants of homeownership for this group. For the few studies that have not ignored this population, most examine differences between non-married Black and White females, but most do not address within group differences. The present study uses data from the 2000 decennial census to determine if ethnicity matters for non-married Black women. The results show that ethnicity explains some, but not all, of the variations of homeownership for non-married Black women