Grassroots Mapping is a series of participatory mapping projects involving communities in cartographic dispute. Seeking to invert the traditional power structure of cartography, the grassroots mappers used helium balloons and kites to loft their own “community satellites” made with inexpensive digital cameras.

GrassrootsMapping on Kickstarter: Get a balloon kit

January 9th, 2012 by Jeffrey Warren


5 Responses to “GrassrootsMapping on Kickstarter: Get a balloon kit”

  1. Ricardo Abad Says:

    Hello and congratulations on your work! I´m the coordinator of a GIS Lab for a local NGO in Cuiabá, Mato Grosso, Brazil. We have interest in getting your balloon kit and so Im wondering how to go about. How much will it cost all together to get the kit down here in Cuiabá? Here´s a bit on how we intend to use:
    The Municipality of Alta Floresta is situated in the northern region of Mato Grosso State, approximately 800 km from Cuiabá, the State´s capital city. The vegetation is predominantly tropical rain forest, with a small patch of cerrado savannah in the southern portion of the municipality. The history of deforestation in the region has left the municipality with a great environmental passive which needs to be restored. New laws regarding environmental licensing has been established and in the past recent months there has been an effort from the State and Local Environment Agencies to map all rural properties in order to satisfy such legislation. In Alta Floresta such efforts have nearly completed mapping all rural properties, alongside with all of its environmental passives. One such environmental passive is related to the Permanent Protection Areas, which are composed mainly, but not restricted only to, the riparian forests alongside the rivers. The legislation defines width interval of forest alongside rivers depending on the width of the rivers. It is therefore imperative to have a detailed map of these areas and where the efforts of restoration need to be applied.
    The main objective of this project is to implement a monitoring system which allows for evaluating the progress of the restoration efforts being implemented by the municipal environmental agency together with the land owners.

  2. Richard Platts Says:

    I am an educator in Pittsburgh, PA and I can see so many applications for balloon kits in schools! I am interested in mapping our school campuses and engaging students a real quality hands-on project. Thanks for all you are doing!

  3. Tom Mueller Says:


    I am a professor at Cal U just down the road from you and would like to talk to about possible collaboration on air balloon photography. I tried your email from your website, but received an error

  4. Jeffrey Warren Says:

    Hey Richard and Tom – please get in touch via the mailing list (sign up at and I’m sure others in our community would be very interested to hear some of your ideas and plans. Our community is very supportive and we’d love to offer whatever support we can to help you map.

  5. hotel in moscow Says:

    It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d certainly donate to this brilliant blog! I suppose for now i’ll settle
    for book-marking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account.
    I look forward to new updates and will talk about
    this website with my Facebook group. Talk soon!

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