Berner Humangeographisches Kolloquium

12 March 2024

Prof. Dr. Maria Rodó-Zárate: Relief Maps+: New Tools for Collecting, Analysing and Visualizing Intersecting Inequalities From an Emotional and Geographic Perspective

Although there is wide research on the complex interaction of different social categories and inequalities, it has been pointed out that the development of research methods is needed. Here I present the new developments of the Relief Maps model as a visual method, a way of collecting, analysing and displaying data on intersecting inequalities. They make possible the visualization of complex social and subjective perceptions while relating emotions (the psychological dimension), power structures (the social dimension) and places (the geographical dimension). While the Relief Maps were initially thought for being drawn by hand by the participants of a research, the digital development of the tool through a website ( uses the potential of technology for empirical research on intersectionality and combines a mainly qualitative approach with the potential of obtaining quantitative patterns. Currently, following the works of feminist geographers on critical visual methods, we have engaged with GIS with the aim of expanding its potentialities through the application of georeferentiation tools and 3D mapping in order to visualize how intersectional inequalities are lived in the places of the everydaylife. In this line, the new version has been designed to combine textual narratives, points and areas with geographic coordinates and places with unknown or vaguer locations to capture the complex qualities of place and scale in relation to the lived experience of intersectional inequalities.