COLLECTIVE SPATIAL COGNITION OF KIDS IN COMMUNITY MAPPINGS
Due to the importance of spatial data in decision making and the cost of collecting these data, in recent years various communities have collaborated on spatial data collection. In these communities some expert and non-expert volunteers record their observations of a region in order to create a map. In these activities one of the most effective tools for recording observations is the sketch map. Due to ease of use and no need to comply with the common rules in Geospatial Information Systems, sketch maps can be drawn by a wide range of people. Because these maps are easy to use and following the GIS rules is not required, sketch maps can be drawn by a wide range of people. Although several studies have focused on raising the level of participation of ordinary people in the field of mapping, less attention has been given to the role of kids as an important part of the society. Hence, this paper including a field study examines the effect of collective spatial cognition of kids in a community mapping activity. For this purpose, the sketches drawn by some school kids are matched and then integrated together, and finally, the output of this process is compared with available metric maps. The results of this study show that despite the stringent conditions and the low age of the participants, the results have been beyond expectations. In this study, kids have provided several points of interest as well as more descriptive information of the region compared to the available data downloaded from OpenStreetMap and Google Maps. Therefore, the output of this study can be used to enrich the available metric map.