Module M06 - Choice of P-Mapping Method based on Purpose, Environment and Resources

Unit M06U01 - Factors Influencing the Choice of Mapping Method


PGIS practitioners use a range of low- and high-tech geographic information technologies for acquisition, validation, analysis, representation and sharing of geo-spatial information.

This Unit reviews the main factors that influence the choice of one method over another or the combination of more than one method. Factors include the purpose behind the initiative, the resources available and the institutional setting or environment.

The approach which map makers may wish to take when embarking upon a participatory mapping initiative will vary significantly depending on the purpose of the mapping initiative. This purpose will be influenced by the audience who views the maps upon completion and makes decisions surrounding their content. Maps may be made exclusively for internal community use or (more commonly) they may be used to communicate local land-related knowledge to outsiders.

Unit objectives / expected outcomes

After the completion of the Unit the trainee will be able to:

  • discuss criteria influencing the choice of participatory mapping methods, including purpose, resources available, and institutional setting.

Content outline, main topics covered and suggested sequencing

This Unit focuses on the topics listed below:

  1. Factors influencing the choice of mapping method (PPT No. 1) (30 min)

Components of the Unit

Handouts for Trainee (to be distributed in printed format):



30 min

Additional trainer resources

  • International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). 2009. Good practices in participatory mapping. A review prepared for the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

Equipment needed

Computer and digital projector

Additional downloads