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GIS use in community planning: a multidimensional analysis of empowerment


  • Sarah A Elwood


A growing body of research examining the social and political implications of geographic information systems (GIS) considers the extent to which the use of this technology may empower or disempower different actors and institutions. However, these studies have tended not to articulate a clear conceptualization of empowerment. Thus, in this paper, I develop a multidimensional conceptual framework for assessing empowerment (and disempowerment), and employ it in examining the impacts of GIS use by community-based organizations engaged in urban planning and neighborhood revitalization. Drawing on a case study conducted with a Minneapolis, Minnesota, neighborhood organization, I show how this multidimensional framework fosters a more complete analysis of empowerment, and therefore, development of a more detailed explanation of the impacts of this new technology.

Suggested Citation

  • Sarah A Elwood, 2002. "GIS use in community planning: a multidimensional analysis of empowerment," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 34(5), pages 905-922, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:pio:envira:v:34:y:2002:i:5:p:905-922

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    1. repec:eee:ecoser:v:4:y:2013:i:c:p:25-32 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Van Hoesen, John & Letendre, Steven, 2010. "Evaluating potential renewable energy resources in Poultney, Vermont: A GIS-based approach to supporting rural community energy planning," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 35(9), pages 2114-2122.
    3. Stelios Gialis & Polyzois Kanelleas, 2006. "Development of Geographical Information Systems Applications for Local Government Organizations: the Case of the Rhodes Municipality, Greece," ERSA conference papers ersa06p800, European Regional Science Association.

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