Maps, New Media and the urban revolution

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by siddharth hande on Tuesday, February 19, 2013


Session type

Technical level


To introduce and engage participants in a discussion over the power and potential of spatially enabled new media tools/technologies, and how they can help drive change in cities.

To illustrate it's use in 'citizen journalism' initiatives that aim to improve city governance, by demoing an app made for the goa project participants on an android mobile device.


Digital technology is transforming the way communication is produced. This change includes the spreading of a different, more innovative production logic (such as citizen and networked journalism) and the implications of these transformations are an object of scrutiny and debate in New Media studies (for example the power of social media in activism and democracy).

A response to this in the field of geography, has been to leverage the power of these transformations, which has given rise to what some scholars call Neo-geography; the term given to describe a set of tools and practices that is dramatically altering the way in which ordinary citizens can create digital spatial data and media content, individually and collectively, to create new practices of producing knowledge about the city, and in turn new methods of re-imagining city spaces.

How can these technologies help make cities better?

This demo/discussion will be an attempt to forward this conversation.


None, although an android phone will help.

Speaker bio

Citizen cartographer, geo-spatial analyst and researcher in urban studies and new media.

Interested in the politics of urbanization in cities of the Global South, the politics of data,  participatory development and urban ecology. Interested in the use of internet technologies, specifically in the design and implementation of new media platforms for it's transformational and disruptive potential.

Currently a Fellow at the Hyderabad Urban Lab (, which is a multidisciplinary urban research initiative of the Right to the City Foundation. The larger goal of the lab is to build an academically rigorous urban research program that is responsive to the needs of new and emergent communities of practice in cities in the global South, particularly in South Asia.

Main activities within the lab include- developing the community data platform; undertaking urban research; and providing citizen mapping, spatial analysis and map-based new media support.

Researcher for Transparent Chennai (2010- 2012); helped develop their data collection methodologies. Provided spatial analysis and map-based new media support.

Founding member, Reclaim Our Beaches, a youth collective that works on issues related to waste and it's management in the city of Chennai.


  • 1

    [-] Rohini Rau 7 years ago

    Would love to hear more about this Siddharth :)

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