POST 7: Issue mapping

Week 2 map


In week 2 we created our first maps that showed the connections between each of our stakeholders (human and non-human). We had come up with six main stakeholders on the sticky notes about and written down what we believe to be their key values underneath. Looking back at this map it is amazing to see how many more ideas and concepts have been added and looking at this map now, it looks quite basic.

Week 4 map


In week 4, we got into bigger groups and created a similar map to represent the stakeholders that relate to our issue and words that relate to them underneath. As you can see we almost tripled the amount of stakeholders on our map. It was great working with a different group as I could bring what I had learnt from my previous map and they could do the same to create a bigger more detailed map.

Week 5 maps


In week 5, we formed different groups and honed in on a few select stakeholders and then listened specific people, organisations or concepts that relate to these stakeholders. I felt more comfortable making these maps as I felt like I had done adequate research to contribute to the groups discussions and I had been with two different groups before this one and could share their insights and well as gain some new ones.


We then created a polemic map, where we looked at the specific issues within our larger issue and then looked at what emotions these might evoke and what might motivate these emotions, all from different perspectives of stakeholders. We hadn’t really looked at the emotional side before so that was interesting to dissect and to also see that there are many different issues within the issue.


We then picked one issue and mapped it visually with the emotions and motivations also included. It was great because we could further expand on our previous map and discuss more ideas that relate to this polemic. We also looked at which stakeholders might have tensions and which ones might conflict with others.


We then further mapped words that related to our issue under the above headings. It was great to see how many we could come up with together.

It was really useful to have a group when trying to unravel such a complex issue. Collaboration allowed me to gain different perspectives of the issue and allow me to form a conversation with other group members and discuss our own opinions. Being able to visually map our issues and the connections of stakeholders and perspectives within the issue was also extremely useful as we were able to see just how big and complex the issue of gender equality is. I always think a few brains are better than one and this definitely proved correct with the amount of information we had included on our maps.

This collaboration exercise also demonstrated to me the fact that there are so many issues within this umbrella issue of gender equality that if society were to try and fix the issue, they would have to tackle all the smaller ones first. They would also have to work at changing the perspectives of individuals. It also showed me the many different perspectives within this issue that I had not previously looked at. Most importantly, this technique of issue mapping was an ‘aid in making sense of the issues’ (Rogers, Sánchez-Querubín and Kil, 2015) for me as I was able to visually see all of my ideas together.


All images taken by: D. Cattelan, August-September 2016.

Rogers, R., Sánchez-Querubín, N. and Kil, A. 2015, Issue Mapping for an Ageing Europe, Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam.

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