Mapping Participation: Call for papers

23 Feb 2024
Mapping Participation: Call for papers

We are delighted to invite contributions to a panel on ‘mapping participation’ at the RGS-IBG Annual International Conference 2024 in London on 27th-30th August 2024.

This session brings together work on mapping public participation and engagement that is emerging in geography, science and technology studies (STS), and cognate disciplines. While work on participatory geographies has explored participatory mapping – i.e. attempts to make processes of mapping more inclusive through discrete forms of participation – our interest here is in mapping geographies of ‘participation’ itself in all its diversities. Moving beyond a view of participation as discrete pre-given methods or processes, constructivist approaches see participation, publics and public issues as being highly diverse, co-produced through practice, and interrelated across places, spaces and times. This opens up new possibilities for mapping participation to better understand and respond to diverse public voices, actions and engagements, including the following.

  • Mapping diverse forms of public participation and engagement: that occur around particular objects, in particular settings or time-spaces, and across wider controversies, issue spaces, systems, ecologies and landscapes.
  • Tracing how particular forms, formats or technologies of participation become established and circulate across space and time: such as deliberative mini-publics, social movements, digital tools, and so on.
  • Understanding how different collective practices of participation interrelate across places, spaces and times: for example in ecologies of participation, deliberative systems and systems of practice. 
  • Mapping how imaginaries of participation, democracy and ‘the public’ become stabilised in particular time-spaces, whether institutions, organisations, regions, constitutions, sociotechnical systems, etc.
  • Methods for mapping participation: including comparative case analysis, case studies, archival research, digital methods, crowdsourcing, citizen social science, participatory methods, interviews and ethnographies. 
  • Experiments in mapping participation: to explore its contributions to research, policy and practice, including shaping decision-making, innovations and new forms of participation and democracy.  

We welcome papers addressing, but not limited to, these themes and on topics that span diverse areas of geographical inquiry including work on social, environmental, economic, democratic and science-related issues.

To propose a contribution please submit a title and abstract (up to 250 words) to Phedeas Stephanides ( and Jason Chilvers ( by the end of Tuesday 27th February 2024.