NEH awards grant for WorldMap development

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Professors Peter Bol and Suzanne Blier have received a $320K award from the National Endowment for the Humanities’ Digital Humanities Implementation Grant for their proposal on “Extending WorldMap to Make It Easier  for Humanists and Others to Find, Use, and Publish Geospatial Information.” This work is supported by technical staff at the Center for Geographic Analysis, especially Ben Lewis who is the chief architect and project manager of the WorldMap project, and by administrative staff at the Institute for Quantitative Social Science.

This 2-year project will enhance the current WorldMap platform to make it easier for the world to find and use a key class of interactive maps called “map services” which are hosted by servers around the world, including WorldMap itself.  Currently estimated in the millions, there is no complete index for such services. This work will allow users from any online mapping application to be able to search for and use these map services as interactive map layers. The objective is to make it possible for everyone to see the development of human civilization in all its diversity and complexity in spatial contexts, to take advantage of the knowledge of others to enhance our own interests, and to create a sustainable and scalable platform in which students and scholars can participate in creating and sharing any work that can be represented spatially.