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Wendy at Green Map's blog

Summer Newsletter!

*|MC:SUBJECT|*
A Green Map Update!
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Map it Fast!

Ready for New Participation

M.OpenGreenMap.org  is our new Mobile Site Collector for interactive Green Maps! This handy webapp makes it easy for everyone to collect new green sites as they visit them. 

Now, Green Mapmakers, tourists, students and locals can collect great green living sites and quickly add up to 8 icons and a photo. Every new site is reviewed by the local Mapmaker, and when it goes live on the map, the person who collected it is notified.

Transforming how Green Maps are made, the Mobile Site Collector can be used with smart phones, tablets or computer. It has 13 language options, thanks to the contributions of the 65-country Green Map network. It even works offline!read more »

Mobile Site Collector Launches!

We are delighted to launch the new Mobile Site Collector!
It’s super handy for charting green living sites on the go and for involving new participation in Green Mapmaking.

Try it at M.OpenGreenMap.org – complete info and video are at GreenMap.org/mobile.

Created by Romanian Green Mapmakers and translated into 13 languages by our global network, this new tool is great for workshops, as well as community members and visitors who encounter places that belong on the Green Map. “Now, you can add them as you find them!" said Wendy Brawer, director of the nonprofit Green Map System. "The Collector automatically grabs the location, and all you need to do is select icons, add a little description and snap a photo. Each site is reviewed by the local mapmaker and contributors receive a notice when it’s on the Green Map”.read more »

1st Green Map Collector Workshop

In July, we took part in organizing a workshop at the United Nations that introduced Green Map’s new Mobile Site Collector to participants from 7 countries - explore the map we made at OpenGreenMap.org/UNdistrict-nyc!

Organized by summer interns Benji Shulman and Samantha Riccio, it was hosted at the head office of Global Action to Prevent War, a UN-based NGO (follow their important work at GlobalActionPW.org). While most participants have a UN connection, the group also included a member of the surrounding Community Board, Manhattan CB 6, which is an appointed advisory liaising with local government on an ongoing basis.

After short introductions and an ice-breaker (where everyone had to share the greenest thing they had done that day) participants were given a brief history of the district and global examples showing how community-engaged mapmaking has been used to build knowledge, networks and action for inclusive, sustainable local development.

Based on her experience making other Open Green Maps with the Collector, Green Map’s summer intern Samantha Riccio then gave a tutorial on how use this new fast, fun tool on mobile phones and tablets. The Collector allows people to collect sites as they encounter them through a simple effective web-app interface on their smart phones. “Offering 13 different languages, the Mobile Site Collector is the perfect tool for this very diverse group. Hopefully it will inspire them to introduce Green Mapmaking to their local communities” said Samantha.

Use the Collector at M.OpenGreenMap.org

Then the fun really began with participants breaking into groups and spreading out around the UN to make use of their new-found mapping capability. Along with many famous landmarks in the area, smaller sites such as bicycle repair and tailoring shops were also mapped. Some groups even discovered beautiful public spaces that had been unknown to them even though they had worked in the area for some time. In just 45 minutes, participants mapped 14 new sites complete with descriptions, photos and the signature Green Map Icons, showing their engagement and enjoyment in the process.

The workshop included a view of all the newly mapped sites and discussion of ways to improve the presentation. This eclectic group's feedback very helpful as we move toward launching the Collector on August 6th, and planning next steps for our 'Map it Fast' mobile tools. Thanks again to Samatha and Benji for their work on this project and to Global Action, which posted a blog here as well as hosted, and to all the participants.

Open Engagement

The Queens Museum hosts beautiful and innovative exhibitions and events, and in May, Green Map System took part in the Open Engagement conference with our partners at the Queens DiverCity Green Map project, Carlos Martinez and Beatriz Gil and the local arts org, Hibridos Collective. Carlos took the wonderful photos here, more are on the group's website.

OE is an annual exploration of various perspectives on art and social justice. This year it focused on a Life/Work theme, and, we found the venue and event to be an ideal showcase for Green Map! Together, we led a virtual tour of New York City around the Panorama – an amazing model of NYC built for the World Fair in 1964, and kept up to date, accurately featuring the city’s streets, buildings and green spaces.

The conference attracted attendees from all over and our 'tour group' included several states and countries. Together, we discussed many noteworthy sites, spread across all five boroughs, as seen on this little map.

We presented both global and local Queens Green Map and explored the use of our shared iconography to express the positive, green and innovative as well as the toxic and hazardous aspects of these various sites. Then, we taught the group how to use our-soon-to-be-released Mobile Site Collector to collect and add more sites to the Green Map we created especially for this event.

Our thanks to the Queens Museum, partners, organizers and participants. We had a great time sharing knowledge, exchanging ideas and exploring new ways to strengthen resiliency in our hometowns!


Wendy, Bernice, Carlos, Beatriz and visitors walking around “New York City”


Visitors share their experiences and assess the potential for mapping for community engagement


Bernice (author of this post) presented one of the New York's most beautiful views - of the Hudson River and the NJ Palisades. During her internship at Green Map, she also published a Green Map of Tel Aviv!


Like being in a virtual helicopter (but without noise!) we strolled across the city in seconds

News from Germany

Bernice and Aruna

In recent years, more and more federal sustainability policies and initiatives are spreading throughout Germany, with the goals of reducing greenhouse gas emission by 40% by 2020 and increasing the share of renewable energy sources consumption by 60% by 2050. In the meantime, a quarter of the energy consumed in Germany is produced by renewable energy sources. This is a great setting for the several ongoing mapmaking projects taking place in Germany at the moment. Green Maps are now live in Berlin, Hamburg and Darmstadt, engaging communities and tourists in continuous efforts to promote greener and healthier ways of living. read more »

Cuba's 15 Years!

La versión española más adelante

Mapa Verde Red, the Green Map network in Cuba, is one of the more dynamic and elaborate ongoing Green Mapmaking projects. Based at Centro Felix Varela in Havana, the Cuban Green Map team has been incredibly prolific in creating tools, maps, videos, guides and educational frameworks. Led by biologist Liana Bidart Cisneros, a great group coordinates all aspects, including María Luisa Ventosa Zenea, Dely Rodríguez Velázquez, Asunción Capote Fernández, Gustavo Blanco Vale and Victoria Castillo Garrido.

In 2013, the 15th anniversary of Mapa Verde Red was celebrated with the publication of Mapa Verde en el contexto Cubano. Published by the Centro Felix Varela, this book is a thorough overview of the processes and methodology underlying the practice of Green Mapmaking as a means for sustainable community development. Download the book below! This anniversary was also marked by the Cuban national television station with a short film showing the network’s impact on sustainability in rural and urban communities in 12 of Cuba's 14 provinces.

Spot Mapa Verde from Centro Félix Varela on Vimeo.read more »

6 New Impact Stories!!

''Green Map Impacts’, our book of locally written stories about the dynamic projects and their outcomes has been updated with new stories!

Six new stories are featured at the top of this page, followed by the original set of stories, first published in English and Japanese in 2009 in partnership with Aichi Green Map and Green Map Japan. New! Story #7, contributed by the Iceland Green Mapmakers, follows the group of six!

The new stories feature new tools and approaches – enjoy them all, story by story or download the complete book (15 MB PDF)!

Special thanks to all the authors, photographers and partners who contributed to the book project; Emily Saltz for initiating the update, Eugenie Flynn and Wendy Brawer for editing, Aaron Reiss for design, WonSun Choi for translation, and Bernice Keshet and Aruna Reddig for their work on this page. Find more outcomes at GreenMap.org/impacts. And now, the new Stories:

read more »

New 'Green by Design' Icon!

Green by Design

Globally recognized Green Map Icons connect all the maps and mapmakers together. Three versions of this award-winning globally designed symbol set have been released over the years, each one complete with multilingual posters and related resources for printed and interactive Green Map. Find them at GreenMap.org/icons.

The design process has been inclusive and exciting but quite time-consuming. This year, we are piloting a new process, and have begun adding new icons, one by one, to the set.

Our first new icon, Green by Design, originated in Cape Town South Africa, where the terrific Green Map project has been part of the World Design Capital 2014 bid and project. Green Mapmakers Arne Purves and Philip Todres have contributed the new symbol as well as posted a blog introducing the World Design Capital program. See the new icon on the interactive Open Green Map there and follow at #WDC2014!read more »

New! How To Video: Green Map Cycling Tour

At #GreenMapNYC, we created a cycling map and tour series to introduce community members and visitors to local climate change impacts and #resiliency resources that directly address local needs and networks.

Entitled Adapting to Change - Lower East Ride, we have blogged about this project since Hurricane Sandy left her mark on our neighborhood.

We have produced interactive and printed Green Maps (in Chinese, Spanish and English), all of which can be explored at Facebook.com/lower.east.ride! read more »

Donate Today for a High Impact 2014

Your tax-deductible support means so much to us! Our year-end newsletter previews our local-global impact in 2014. Please contribute today!

12/3/13 is #GivingTuesday. We encourage all people interested in #SustainableCommunities to contribute to our nonprofit @GreenMap at GreenMap.org/donate.

When we took part in 2012's GivingTuesday, we had 835 projects in our network - as of today, we have registered 879 locally-led Green Mapmakers! read more »

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