Digital Geographies, Geographies of Digitalia (an AAG Call for Papers)

As a critical cultural and urban geographer, feminist and queer theorist, and digital studies scholar, I find it difficult to place my work and interests in both critical digital and computational studies within the way that #geoweb is presently formed and discussed. Even with my passion for the outcomes, algorithms, and politics of GIS; my work in mental mapping and adoration for environment behavior mapping, transect walks; and other spatial methods and analytics has shown repeatedly that non-GIS methods and analytics are overlooked in the field and beyond. At the same time, conceptualizations of computationnew media, data mining, and data visualization continue to expand the possibilities for spatiodigital research methods and analytics and the very meanings of these endeavors, but geography’s contribution to these areas remains fixed to certain, long-term ways of framing these terms all the while contributing to their development. As the digitalia around us grows and shifts, how will we as a discipline?

Join in this call for papers “Digital Geographies, Geographies of Digitalia” at the forthcoming AAG conference in Tampa, April 2014. Look for hashtags #critgeog, #geodig, and #geoweb.


Association of American Geographers Call for Papers
Digital Geographies, Geographies of Digitalia

Jen Jack Gieseking (Bowdoin College) and Luke Bergmann (University of Washington)

With expanding interest in and work on the ways technology and our everyday lives interrelate, increasing recognition of implications of digital methods and theoretical dispositions in geography is also growing. Much of this attention has been devoted to important and exciting explorations using geoweb or Geospatial Web frameworks, often prioritizing the work of GIS, big data, and/or, reflexively, science and technology studies (STS). While the digital humanities are exploding onto the academic scene–not only foregrounding a disposition toward a creative criticism that is generative, but also simultaneously posing questions of interest to literary and social theory–“digital geographies” are beginning to emerge. What can geography bring to the table? How might we embrace not only digital geographies that explore the digital, the computational, or the algorithmic, but also embrace geographies of digitalia, i.e. the social construction of our everyday lives and space through the imbrication of the digital and the material?

In this session, we are interested in fostering a broader diversity of digital scholarship, qualitative and quantitative, that consciously engages digitally, yet may or may not take ‘the digital’ as its object of study. We are particularly interested in papers that provide theoretical, methodological, and/or analytical insights into digital approaches to geography. We welcome papers inspired by, but not limited to, the following topics:
  • feminist, queer, critical race, and disability studies approaches for challenging inequality and injustice through digital means and/or in digital spaces and places
  • constructions in the digital differences of place, such as urban vs. rural, comparative urbanisms, across scales
  • critical uses of Open Access, Open Source, Free and Open Source, and/or Open Data platforms, software, or initiatives
  • computational methods and analytics in geographic projects
  • analyses of civil movements’ use of technology, such as Tahir Square, Occupy, etc.
  • implementations of social media in geographic study and pedagogy
  • theoretical and applied insights into spatio-temporalities of digital space and place
  • data visualizations of space and time for diverse publics
  • digital methods and tools to support geographic participatory action research
  • policy implications for shifting ethics and possibilites as inspired by online spaces
Please send a title and abstract of no more than 250 words to Jen Jack Gieseking (jgieseki AT bowdoin DOT edu) and Luke Bergmann (lrb9 AT uw DOT edu) by October 20th, 2013. Feel free to contact us with any questions about the session. We look forward to a lively and engaging conversation!