GIS use in community planning: a multidimensional analysis of empowerment
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.
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