Mission Statement: Our mission is to work with communities across the globe to visualize local knowledge through GIS, drones, and collaboration.
Core Values: With our mission at the center of all projects we undertake, our core values include the following:
- Respect and appreciation for all forms of knowledge
- Interest in meaningful and authentic collaboration between academic and non-academic partners
- Focus on easily accessible technology to share the important stories and knowledge of communities
- Curiosity for learning and teaching others about place-based issues
Objectives: We work in unique community-university partnerships to utilize spatial thinking and geographic methods (e.g. mapping, Geographic Information Systems or GIS, participatory action research, drones, tablets, field data collection, focus groups, and interviews) to cooperatively address the needs and desires of community groups, neighborhood institutions, and residents across the globe.
- Objective 1: Identify and raise awareness about community-defined assets, needs, and future visions.
- Objective 2: Develop free and open-source geographic resources, maps, multimedia, and datasets in collaboration with local community-based and/or non-profit organizations, residents, and/or government entities for intentional and transparent information sharing.
- Objective 3: Cultivate, build upon, and strengthen a collaborative and sustainable network of organizations, residents, researchers, and practitioners with shared interests in utilizing spatial thinking and geographic methods to help communities and neighborhoods better understand themselves.
- Objective 4: Provide meaningful real-world learning opportunities for students (university and K-12) to engage in community-based research and partnerships using spatial thinking and geographic methods.
- Objective 5: Support the empowerment of marginalized residents and communities through the use of mapping technologies, geography, and university partnerships.
- Objective 6: Offer training opportunities and periodic workshops to equip interested community residents, practitioners, and NGOs with skills in geographic methods and applications.
We were founded in July 2015 and continue to grow with your collaboration and support.
Dr. Timothy L. Hawthorne
Assistant Professor of GIS, University of Central Florida Department of Sociology