A participatory web map service: the case of Theewaterskloof Dam
In recent years there have been huge advancements in GIS as a technology and as a science. Previously, GIS was critiqued as a segregating science used exclusively by geospatial experts. In recent years however, various studies have investigated the potential for communities without geospatial training to contribute towards, or benefit from, the use of GIS. Indeed, innovations such as open source and internet based packages like Google Earth and Open Street Map as well as mobile navigation devices have already popularised the importance of geospatial data. This study sought to investigate one way of providing up-to-date maps to fishermen and tourists using dams in South Africa. The paper reports on a pilot case study in the use of web based GIS service for mapping on the Theewaterskloof dam in South Africa. It presents a case study methodology for the development and testing of a web GIS that can be optimised for smartphones and tablets so that communities can access updated information while using the dam, which is rated as dangerous, for fishing or other recreational activity.