Public Participation GIS: Applications in Community-Based Environmental Protection
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Today with the maturation of technology, geographic information systems (GIS) provide governments, organizations, and policy makers with improved data and information for database management, visualization, and analytical tools in environmental planning. However, when taking into consideration the significance of public involvement in the whole planning process, traditional GIS has not fully incorporated the public needs into GIS technology or facilitated public participation. Some critics argue that the system is inherently authoritarian and techno-centric, excluding those who cannot access data and information. Recently planning scholars and GIS specialists have tried to close the gap between public participation in the planning process, and GIS technology and its applications. The concept of Public Participation GIS (PPGIS) is rooted in this trend. The purpose of the paper is to compare and analyze different approaches of PPGIS to facilitate public participation in the community-based environmental planning and decision-making process. The paper investigates four case studies to compare. For the comparison and analysis, it uses frameworks consisting of three dimensions. Finally, the paper draws lessons from the implementation of PPGIS for the planning and decision-making process.
- Masters Theses