VISUALIZING LIFE IN AN INFORMAL SETTLEMENT OF SOUTH AFRICA USING WEB MAPS AND STORY MAPS
- Department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Keywords: participatory GIS, community mapping, informal settlement, web maps, story maps
Abstract. Informal settlements are often not mapped, and only anecdotal evidence is commonly found on the activities that take place daily within these settlements. To address, this lack of information we followed a participatory GIS (PGIS) approach to mapping the daily struggles of individuals in the informal settlement of Alaska, Mamelodi, in Pretoria, South Africa. We interviewed twelve community members and started to analyse the data, but the question arises, how do we visualize and communicate the results? We decided to make use of web maps and story maps, and we implemented them both in Esri ArcGIS Online and in Mapbox. In this paper, we present the results of an evaluation of ArcGIS Online and Mapbox for creating web maps and story maps for PGIS projects. A list of evaluation criteria was developed based on literature and our experience. The results show that both ArcGIS Online and Mapbox are suitable options for creating web maps and story maps, but that they have different barriers to entry. We also found that story maps are superior in some cases to web maps for creating visualizations for PGIS projects as they provide a narrative with which the user can connect and a more immersive environment than web maps.