Spring on the York College campus

International Atlas of Peace

The purposes of the electronic International Atlas of Peace are to generate, collect and disseminate maps, graphs, tables and other materials about peace, conflict resolution and peace/social justice initiatives, policies and strategies at multiple scales. The project seeks to be "International" in terms of inclusive global participation, an "Atlas" in that it primarily uses cartographic and spatial representation techniques from multiple cultures and disciplines, and interprets "Peace" in all its connotations, whether as absence of conflict, or the promotion of all aspects of a more just and sustainable quality of life. 

Contributions to the on-line project will come from scholars, students, program directors, independent scholars, organizational volunteers and policy representatives around the world. Interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary and multilingual contributions are encouraged and welcomed; these include specific peace and social justice groups and organizations, but also those interested in environmental and sustainable initiatives with peace and justice themes, and all groups and individuals engaged in art, education and recreation forms devoted to peace issues.

Materials will be added as they come to the attention of the Atlas Executive and Advisory Committees. The major objective is to provide a comprehensive and on-going atlas that will contain historical, contemporary and future-oriented maps, tables, photographs and references for diverse audiences.

Atlas Committees

  • Atlas Executive Committee Members

    Atlas Executive Committee Members

    Atlas for Peace Stan Brunn  Stanley D. Brunn, Professor Emeritus, Department of Geography, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40506. Social, political and environmental geography, world urbanization, innovative cartography: brunn@uky.edu

    Atlas Clark Archer  J. Clark Archer: Professor, School of Natural Resources, University of Nebraska – Lincoln, Lincoln, NE 68583. Political geography, mapping, cartography and GIS, atlas production and editing: jarcher@unl.edu
    Atlas Vandana Wadhwa  Vandana Wadhwa: President/CEO, MERIDIAN Research & Consulting, Inc., Norwood, MA 02062. Health, (dis)ability, gender, development, social justice and structural violence: vandanaw@verizon.net 
    Atlas Jennifer Pomeroy  Jennifer Pomeroy: Assistant Professor of Geography, Department of History and Political Science, York College of Pennsylvania, York, PA 17403. Human dimensions of global change, GIS, Remote sensing application, political ecology, environmental land use planning, Asia/East Asia/China: jpomeroy@ycp.edu
    Atlas Jeremy Tasch  Jeremy Tasch: Associate Professor, Department of Geography & Environmental Planning, Towson University, Towson, MD 21252. Political ecology of resource development, social theory and nature, cartography and data handling, Central Eurasian studies: jtasch@towson.edu
    Atlas Daniel Sui  Daniel Z. Sui: Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor and Professor of Geography, Public Affairs, Public Health, and City/Regional Planning, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210. Open GIS, volunteered geographic information, social media, crowdsourced mapping: sui.10@osu.edu
    Atlas John Kostelnick  John C. Kostelnick: Associate Professor of Geography, Illinois State University, Normal, IL 61790. Cartography, GIS and society, crisis mapping, humanitarian relief mapping, ethnic and cultural mapping, geovisualization methods for and interactive mapping of environmental and cultural phenomena: jkostelnick@ilstu.edu
    Atlas Matthew Wilson  Matthew W. Wilson: Associate Professor, Department of Geography University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40506 and Visiting Scholar, Center for Geographic Analysis, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138. Co-founder and co-director, New Mappings Collaboratory for new engagements with geographic representation, critical cartography and GIS, urban political geography, digital mapping science and technology studies: matthew.w.wilson@uky.edu
    Atlas of Peace Jennifer Fluri  Jennifer L. Fluri: Associate Professor of Geography, Department of Geography, University of Colorado-Boulder, Boulder, CO 80309. Gender, geopolitics, development, conflict, post-conflict, geographies of peace building and conflict mediation: jennifer.fluri@colorado.edu
  • Atlas Advisory Committee Members

    Atlas Advisory Committee Members

    We are seeking Advisory Committee members who are willing to lend their time and expertise and act as links to relevant geography sub-disciplines, other disciplines, and various national and international entities. We do not foresee a consistently large time commitment, rather the lending of time and expertise as the situation demands.

    For example, those with expertise on certain issues will propose their recommendations to the Executive Committee, while on other issues, another set of three or four members will make their recommendations. All will be kept informed of issues that come to the Executive Committee’s attention.

    If you are interested in participating as an item contributor, please contact Vandana Wadhwa at vandanaw@verizon.net and indicate your potential areas of interest/topics for your contribution(s). The topics can be drawn from the list provided or based on ideas and suggestions of your own. 

  • Website host

    Website host

    We are exploring possible hosts for the atlas, including universities, institutes and publishers, but additional suggestions for possible hosts are also welcome at this time. The host will need to identify one or two persons willing to work with the Executive Committee and also ensure the necessary financial and other staff resources to make a successful enterprise.

    Until then, York College of Pennsylvania has provided the facility of a website that will serve as an introductory and invitational site for the project. Jennifer Pomeroy will act as the administrator for this website.

Contributor and Project Information

  • Basic information for contributors

    Below we provide some basic information on the Atlas format and materials we wish to include, although additional suggestions from interested parties and contributors are welcome.

    1. Format: The International Atlas of Peace is envisioned as an interactive electronic atlas, where users will be able to download maps for research or instructional purposes. Materials can be submitted in digital or paper form and will be included on the website organized by major subject categories, such as those listed in the last section of this document, with the understanding that new categories as well as new subcategories may emerge. All final decisions on content will be made the Executive Committee.
    2. Kinds of materials: maps, tables, graphs, text boxes, photographs, posters, stamps, music scores, reference materials, etc.
    3. Maps: a wide variety of maps will be considered including those using traditional and non-traditional cartography. Open source mapping is encouraged.
    4. Text items (short in length are encouraged). For long text, such as articles, treaties, programs, etc. a website or additional reference may be cited and/or a link provided.
    5. References: We consider that providing a comprehensive and accurate bibliography is essential for short- and long-term use by students, senior scholars, organizational directors and policymakers from around the world. Each item that will appear in the atlas will provide a reference, for example, a book, chapter, article, table, photograph, cartoon, or website link. Where required, copyright permission must be obtained by the contributor before submission of Atlas materials. A copy of such permission/s must be provided to the Atlas Executive Committee members at the time of submission of the Atlas materials/items. In case modified maps or materials are used, standard reference procedure with complete citing of source should be used. All submissions should also be sensitive to local, national and international variations/contestations regarding place names, boundary placements, etc.
    6. Size of items to be submitted: TBD
    7. Scale: a mix of international, regional, national and local (e.g., individual cities) are welcome.
    8. Multiple languages (e.g., Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish and others) are encouraged and welcomed. All non-English materials must be accompanied by an English translation at the time of submission.
    9. Sources: We wish to include a variety of sources for all materials. Explore websites, books, journal articles, etc. for potential maps, tables, etc.; we want to include examples of topics that might be mapped for other countries and regions, but now are only seen in maps about individual countries and regions.For example, countries granting asylum for those persecuted in other countries AND/OR cities/regions that have active faith-based or secular institutions supporting/serving refugees from bordering countries’ clashes

    In-progress maps and other projects: Works in progress (maps, photographs, websites, etc.) are encouraged, especially student projects, international field research, interdisciplinary 

  • Proposed outline for the project

    We are deeply thankful to all those who participated in the discussions at the Chicago AAG Meeting's double session on the atlas for providing many of these ideas, considerations and topics. The tentative outline for the Atlas includes the following:

    A.    Introduction

    1. Definitions of Peace: can include discussions such as
      • Multiple perspectives/understandings of peace, perhaps even sectioning the Atlas according to them, e.g., (i) peace as absence of conflict and violence, (ii) peace as independent, multifaceted quality including justice (social, economic, political, and environmental), quality of life, sustainability etc.
      • Considerations of “measuring the unmeasurable” (see Cutter, Golledge and Graf, 2002)
    1. How geography and geographers can contribute to the study of peace and peace mapping
    2. Cartographies of peace and mapping: the role of maps in peacemaking; cartographic and GIS issues related to conflict areas and disputed zones
    3. Critical Cartography, and alternative geographies and cartographies:
      • Challenging power relations and standard language/understandings of “peace” in favor of local and contextual understandings
      • The obscuring of violence in peace and peace terminology (e.g., sexual violence by peacekeeping forces, corruption and humanitarian aid)
      • Representational issues using traditional/existing peace data
      • Conflicts inherent in certain peace data itself, e.g., the index of peace
      • Considerations of peace as related to non-human entities (environment, animal welfare, etc)

    B.    Case Studies at various scales

    C.    Information through maps/text/other media about peace-related topics as below.

          Suggested Topics for the Atlas:

    First, we will need to explore all topics that we think need to be included and later organize them into major headings: some of the suggested ideas for the major headings are below. We have a breakdown of subheadings within these headings, which will be shared as more ideas come in. We also need to identify who would be willing to work on which topic, so we request that you share that interest with us as well. For each topic, we also need to know the existing data sources and what data can be generated.

    The list below includes ideas generated pre-and-post Chicago session discussions. Please feel free to add to the list. Final order and grouping will be decided later when the full list is finalized. Formal instructions on when and how Atlas items and materials should be submitted will be circulated once that listing is complete.

    1. Background maps on topics such as ethnic/linguistic/religious patterns, and correlated conflict maps based on these grounds
    2. Global trends in armed conflict
    3. Historic maps (e.g., N. J. G. Pounds, N. Spykman, G. Taylor, et al.)
    4. Historical geographies of non-violence, e.g., legacies of pacifist thinkers and movements/other thinkers they inspired
    5. Intertwining of war/conflict and peace: e.g., Sartre's chairing of the Russell War Tribunal and flowing from that, mapping how information about violence has been used to foster peace; veiling of violence in peace initiatives (see #4 in section above)
    6. Geographies and networks of groups promoting peace, cooperation and healing (peace groups, youth clubs, pacifist groups with names, addresses, website info, etc.)
    7. Treaties, regions of cooperation, consensus building efforts and related maps
    8. War, military, and the Military Industrial Complex
    9. Pre and post-conflict maps (e.g., the Balkans, SE Asia, etc.)
    10. Existing conflicts: border disputes, land/water claims, etc.
    11. Reviews and ratings of countries by rights and/or justice organizations such as Human Rights Watch, Freedom Watch, etc.
    12. Driving forces of peacetime economies as opposed to military economies and the arms sales network
    13. Budgets for peace (see for example U.S. Institute of Peace budget)
    14. Global Peace Index (existing, and amended—see below);
    15. Gross National Peace Index (devise one)
    16. Quality of Life index (by country and also for cities: best places to live, life expectancy, etc.
    17. Indices with bearing on quality of life (various rights, freedoms, etc):
    18. Peace Programs and Degrees (Peace and conflict resolution in education (programs offered), and research/praxis (institutes, centers)
    19. Culture, art and representation in relation to peace (symbolic and spatial), with discussion of art and representation as peace facilitators/builders
    20. Peace and literature
    21. Peace zones: DMZ, peace corridors (Sri Lanka, Antarctica, Outer Space, etc.),
    22. Pacifist colonies(e.g. in Colombia and elsewhere)
    23. Peacekeeping forces: (nationalities represented) in different locations, costs (total, and who contributes most to UN and regional efforts), and hidden violence (e.g., sexual assault by peacekeepers)
    24. Humanitarian aid/relief examples (for disasters: interfaith, interregional, etc.)
    25. Demining efforts
    26. Everyday peace activities (maps show location of those housing the homeless, feeding the hungry, empowerment centers, drug rehabilitation spouse abuse centers, pro bono legal groups, etc.) – would be desirable to have a set of these activities for cities in different countries
    27. Conscientious objectors: major source regions
    28. Public participation GIS (PPGIS) maps (e.g., local level issues about human rights, agrarian reform, etc.)
    29. Biographies of Nobel Peace Prize and other Peace Prize Winners
    30. Home countries and preferred causes (peace, environment, education, children’s rights etc) of Nobel and other Peace Prize winners
    31. Google earth images and/or mapping of
      • Disputed boundaries and contested areas (terrestrial and maritime)
      • Divided cities (Jerusalem, Belfast, Nicosia, etc.), perhaps with discussions
      • Please note that Google Earth terms and conditions of use specify that the images may not be modified in any way or form, and must appear with the proper attribution of source.
    32. Votes related to peace issues (UN votes related to peace, e.g., nuclear disarmament, apartheid, Tibet, Palestinian rights, etc.; popular or parliamentary votes in countries or cities related to peace issues)
    33. Visible, invisible and frozen conflicts
    34. Environment, sustainability and related matters, including those related to vulnerability, mitigation and adaptation
      • Climate change and related conflicts over changing resources and their access and control
      • Climate refugees
      • Sustainable development as fostering peace/peaceful living (including but not limited to sustainable agriculture practices)
      • Environmental refuges
      • Non-human peace considerations (animals rights/life, etc)
    35. Structural violence and structural approaches to its reduction/alleviation—can use gender, ethnicity, sexuality, (dis)ability, refugee status etc. as analytical bases)