The Strategies & Challenges of Collective & Critical Story Map-Making: Engaging Housing (In)justice Under COVID-19
Counter-mapping the City International Virtual Conference Presentation 2022
On March 15, I presented at the Counter-mapping the City International Virtual Conference “in” the Philippines as part of the Counter-mapping as Urban Resistance Seminar Series by the Urban Studies Foundation and the Counter-mapping PH Network in partnership with the University of the Philippines Department of Geography, the Social Sciences and Philosophy Research Foundation, and the Syracuse University Department of Geography and the Environment.
With the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project (AEMP), I co-presented our panel, The Strategies & Challenges of Collective & Critical Story Map-Making: Engaging Housing (In)justice Under COVID-19. After sharing the history and evolution of the AEMP, we discussed the COVID-19 story mapping subproject: collective counter-mapping as a community resource. In sharing strategies and challenges of our work, we reflected on each stage of co-production: research, design, development, and oral history curation.
My portion of the presentation focused on the design stage. I described the design behind the interactive digital story mapping of (1) Global Housing Protections & Housing Justice Actions and (2) Eviction Information & Tenant Narratives of Resistance. I also spoke about the co-design process, explicating the design rationale and principles: accessibility, aesthetic sensibility, language justice, usability, and value-sensitivity. Moreover, I described the role of counter-narratives in counteracting the false dominant narratives that center on victim-blaming our unhoused neighbors and tenants in poverty traps. As such, embedded within the mapping system is an audio-visualizer of the oral stories: a multi-sensory experience design to capture hearts and minds by transmitting the power of voice through digital cartography.
In closing, we played the story, Nobody Should Have to Be Homeless, to foster collective listening and generate discussion of housing issues, which we invite you to join in!