Flying a kite: playful mapping in a multidisciplinary field-course

Jiří Pánek, Vít Pászto, Chris Perkins

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This article reviews the potential of kite-mapping as part of an interdisciplinary and multinational field course. It situates kite-mapping as a low cost, high quality, participatory approach, in relation to field use of maps, arguing that research might usefully attend to more than simply the skills acquired during the field exercise and the technicalities of the innovation. Evidenced from two day-long workshops on the Maltese island of Gozo we describe practical issues involved in making the mapping work. We draw on descriptions of field practice and deploy a multi-method evaluation of staff and student reactions and experiences to explore pedagogic aspects of kite-mapping. We conclude that the practices of kite-mapping significantly impact upon the value of the mapping technique, and highlight how creative and playful mapping processes implicit in the technique might usefully be deployed in other field contexts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-336
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Geography in Higher Education
Issue number3
Early online date20 Apr 2018
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • DIY mapping
  • Gozo
  • Kite-mapping
  • playful geography
  • research-led teaching


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