Radiation mapping is too important to be left to experts: the role of maps in Japan after March 11, 2011

Japan Radiation Map from GoogleEarth

Event Information

Date & Time
April 7, 2014 - 1:00pm to 2:30pm
Hatcher Graduate Library, Instruction Space, Clark Library, 2nd Floor
Location Information
Event Type

Jean-Christophe Plantin talks about how traditional "critical cartography" assumes that maps can either serve the interests of those in power or empower those seeking social justice, and how this ambivalence in cartography is present in contemporary web-based mapping applications. Light refreshments.

In describing the production of radiation maps, Plantin addresses the lack of information directly following the Fukushima Daiichi power plant explosions on March 11, 2011, by focusing on three points: how these maps were used along with innovative initiatives to find radiation data; how these mapmakers gathered and communicated online in an ad hoc crisis infrastructure; and how the maps were used to sort out different and possibly contradictory radiation measures and to make sense of the radiation situation in the country.

Plantin is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Michigan in Communication Studies and the School of Information. His dissertation was about the creation and use of participatory maps during public debates, with the case study of citizen radiation mapping initiatives after the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant. He holds MAs from Université Paris 8 and from the European Graduate School, and a PhD from the Université de Technologie de Compiègne, France.

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Host Contact
Jungwon Yang yangjw@umich.edu
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Last modified: 03/25/2014