Emotional Maps: Participatory Crowdsourcing of Citizens´ Perceptions of Their Urban Environment
Public participation and civic engagement in the urban planning process are societal trends that stretch across countries, cultures, and classes. After decades of communist regimes in the Eastern Bloc, where there was basically no civic participation, civic society in the Czech Republic began to engage in discussions with the authorities, and citizens became more active in local planning. In 1994 eleven municipalities started the Network of Healthy Cities of the Czech Republic as a platform for sharing good practices in sustainable development and local participation. In the last three years, members of the Network have used emotional mapping activities to facilitate and improve the process of participatory planning. This paper describes the timeline of development and the deployment of an emotional mapping methodology in various workshops in the Healthy Cities network. A total of forty-six emotional mapping workshops were organised in thirty-five municipalities of the Czech Republic. The paper presents the change from crayon-based maps to digital web-mapping platforms; and presents a case study of the Prague 12 district, where emotional mapping workshops were used to explore the perception of safety, among other issues.
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