In an increasingly interdisciplinary academic environment, there are certain technologies that are situated at the crossroads of collaborative research methods. Digital mapping is one such technology that crosses many disciplines, as inquiries on locational data are becoming integral to the methods of analysis.
The Institute for Digital Research and Education (https://idre.ucla.edu/), in partnership with the Urban Humanities Initiative (http://www.urbanhumanities.ucla.edu/), is holding a three-part workshop series in the Spring of 2015 on “Digital Mapping”, open to all members of the campus community. The workshops will cover the basics of conducting spatial analysis through a variety of tools, including desktop applications, web and cloud based online applications, and fieldwork methods using GPS devices. The focus will be on both instructing potential campus mappers on how to use particular location-based technologies, as well as fostering discussions on what choices one may have and how it may impact their research methodologies.
Part 1: Got Data? How to map your data
You have data that needs to be visualized on a map for further analysis. This workshop will discuss various desktop applications that allow you to “spatialize” your data through the introduction of various Digital Mapping technologies. A hands-on segment will allow participants to experiment with various GIS authoring tools. (Technologies covered: ArcGIS, QGIS and Google Earth)
Part 2: Got GPS? Methods in Spatial Ethnographic Research
Spatializing research design adds a dimension to research questions that can lead to new inquiries and narrative flows. Participants will be introduced to a variety of spatial methods, such as geotagging, GPS, GIS and remote sensing. We will also discuss how to collect spatial data as part of traditional research methods, such as during interviews, or participant observation. Through a facilitated discussion, participants will begin to identify what spatial methods and analyses are appropriate to address their research questions.
Part 3: Mapping for the web? Emerging cloud-based mapping technologies
Mapbox, CartoDB, and Leaflet are examples of emerging location-based technologies that are challenging Google, ESRI and OpenLayers in cloud-based spatial platforms. Explore the latest spatial applications and learn about the potential they have for digital mapping, and how they may be integrated as part of your research. A hands-on segment will explore simple coding techniques that can get your data published on the web using various web mapping technologies.