Walking and Talking: Place-Based Data Collection and Mapping for Participatory Design with Communities

Sebastian Prost, Vasilis Ntouros, Gavin Wood, Henry Collingham, Nick Taylor, Clara Crivellaro, Jon Rogers, John Vines

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This paper explores the value of a participant-led walking method, during which matters of place in urban or rural contexts are explored. While walking, a diverse dataset is collected, including audio recordings, photographs, GPS tracks, as well as three words that participants are prompted for at each stop along the walk via a bespoke web application. We used this approach in an urban community in the UK and a rural community in Greece as part of ongoing place-based initiatives. Our findings show how participants connected personal and emotional stories with structural issues, countered official, ‘authorised’ discourses about both places, and how maps and videos created after the walks acted as boundary objects. We reflect on the claims of walking as a method that fosters equitable researcher-participant relationships, outline future design directions for participatory walking and mapping technologies, and consider the value of walking methods and map-making for participatory design.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDIS '23
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 2023 ACM Designing Interactive Systems Conference
EditorsDaragh Byrne, Nikolas Martelaro, Andy Boucher, David Chatting, Sarah Fdili Alaoui, Sarah Fox, Iohanna Nicenboim, Cayley MacArthur
Place of PublicationNew York, USA
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781450398930
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jul 2023
EventACM Designing Interactive Systems (DIS) 2023: Rebuilding & Resilience - Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, United States
Duration: 10 Jul 202314 Jul 2023


ConferenceACM Designing Interactive Systems (DIS) 2023
Abbreviated titleACM DIS2023
Country/TerritoryUnited States
Internet address

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