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.

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At Public Lab, we've grown the Grassroots Mapping community into a broader effort to enable communities to understand and respond to environmental threats with DIY techniques.

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What is Grassroots Mapping?

January 27th, 2010 by Jeffrey Warren

A group of activists, educators, technologists, and community organizers now known as Public Laboratory came together to organize the Gulf Oil Mapping project. Since May 2010, we have been working with New Orleans-based Louisiana Bucket Brigade to get Gulf Coast residents out on boats and along beaches to produce high-resolution aerial imagery of the spill’s effects. All the imagery from this project is being released into the public domain

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How it started

Legatum Center at MIT and the Center for Future Civic Media at MIT)