Wisconsin Land Information Program: The Contexts of Power, Politics and Scale
E-planning through the Wisconsin Land Information Program: the contexts of power, politics and scale by Patty Day and Rina Ghose, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in International Journal of E-Planning Research (IJEPR) Volume 1, Issue 1 (2012)
Through the lenses of Critical GIS and political economy, this paper examines the history of the Wisconsin Land Information Program WLIP, which was created in 1989 and provides an early US example of the adoption of GIS at the local government level. Using a mixed methods approach and a case study design, the authors focus on the cooperation and conflicts among various actors and networks, at and between scales, during times of plentiful and lean resources. Catalyzed by the 1978 Larsen Report, the WLIP was unique in its inclusiveness of everyone involved in land records management. University academics brought together all the stakeholders to create a thematic and territorial network with political power and a unique funding mechanism. As land use planning and state budget deficits became prominent, the program became a target, leading to conflict and power struggles, particularly with the state Department of Administration DOA. What began as an egalitarian, grass-roots, socially just, forward-thinking program has shape-shifted, and while the WLIP is still a viable and functioning program, its egalitarian goals have been subverted by economics.
Dr. Lea Shanley is the founder and former co-Chair of the Federal Community of Practice on Crowdsourcing and Citizen Science, a vibrant community of 200 federal employees from more than 35 agencies. She is also a co-founding member of the Citizen Science Association. Dr. Shanley recently served as a Presidential Innovation Fellow at NASA, where she helped to foster a culture of open innovation. Prior to this, she founded and directed the Commons Lab at the Wilson Center, served in the US Senate as a Congressional Science Fellow, and worked with local and tribal communities to develop GIS-based decision support systems for city planning, natural resource management, coastal management, and disaster response through the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
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