Category Archives: Munchen

Emotional Mapping – Towards a geographical explanation of drug use

Luise Klaus & Mélina Germes
“Emotional Mapping. Towards a geographical explanation of drug use”

In: Kaló, Zsuzsa; Tieberghien, Julie, Korf, Dirk J. (Eds.), Why? Explanations for drug use and drug dealing in social drug research. Pabst Science Publishers, 2019.


In Europe, most open drug scenes have similar spatial and social characteristics, especially in the growing dynamic of gentrification. This may potentially marginalise more drug users in public spaces. The cities face the same challenges in terms of governance. Within a perspective rooted in critical cartography and social geography, we propose emotional mapping as a method of conceiving urban lived spaces of drug users in European cities, with the aim of considering marginalised drug users as the subjects of their narratives and spatial representations. The method allows a complex analysis of the spatial experiences of urban space. It shows how the emotional appropriation of space by drug users is embedded in the structural socio-spatial exclusion phenomenon in Europe. Continue reading

Portfolio of Emo-mapping in some German cities

In this portfolio of colored illustrations of a chapter published in the ESSD Conference Book 2019 we present very briefly some empirical material collected during emo-mapping interviews in Berlin (Mélina Germes, together with Francesca Guarascio and Christian Hergesell from NUDRA Project), Frankfurt am Main, Nuremberg and Munich (Luise Klaus). Continue reading

Drug policies within urban spaces: Emotional mapping as an innovative qualitative cartography method

Mélina Germes, Luise Klaus
ISSDP Conference, Paris, May 2019

This work is in progress. A key aspect of the interdisciplinarity of our work is that we aim to bring a geographical approach to research on drug policies. First, I will further explain what we mean with “drug policies are urban policies”. From our perspective as urban geographers, we aim to understand drug policies as part of urban policies. For three reasons:

– First, local actors like health institutions, police forces, harm-reduction agencies and municipalities play a key role in the implementation of drug policies.

– Second, all drug policies are strongly spatially structured: the localisation of harm reduction facilities in certain neighbourhoods depends from the geographies of drug consumption and its analysis by policy actors.

– Third, drug consumption itself has particular geographies, strongly bounded to the broader socio-economic geography of the cities.

A comprehensive analysis of drug policies and their challenges has to consider the city as a whole AND the other urban policies led by other institutions. In order to do so, we developed a method we called “emotional mapping”. Continue reading