counter-mapping e-waste

If the map user experience is not optimal, please access it via direct link

This counter-map is based on repair and care and their relationship to breakage and restoration. While this map focuses on electronic and consumer waste, we live in many ways that might need repair. How might we map a recovery?

Research on e-waste often generates maps that show the lifecycle of consumer and industry electronics. Corporate electronics companies have also contributed to this trend as a form of greenwashing. This workshop uses counter-mapping as a method to challenge these modes of representation. Counter-maps can also represent psychological as well as embodied distances.

We will map the environmental footprint of our devices or concepts to speculate a more ecologically conscious and creative future.

The activity (use the + at the top right on desktop browser or bottom on mobile):

  1. Find an electronic device that has become obsolete, broken, or found. Alternatively, a concept that needs repair.

  2. Take a photo, video or write a caption.

  3. Mark a pin on the map of where (or where you think) your artifact was manufactured and/or resourced. If a digital artifact- where do you think the servers are?

  4. Upload your photo, video or place your text on that marker

  5. Mark a pin on the map of you think it will end up if you disposed of it right now.

  6. Mark a pin on the map of where would you send it to if you were to repurpose it and gift/sell/exhibit it. For example: a loved one, an art gallery, a charity, a community.

  7. Connect the lines to make speculative future of the device after being repaired, restored, or upcycled.

We encourage anyone with repair skills to share their knowledge and resources on the map.