Reconsidering Scale: Using Geographic Information Systems to Support Spatial Planning Conversations

Dan Milz, Moira Zellner, Charles Hoch, Joshua Radinsky, Kelsey Pudlock, Leilah Lyons

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


How do planners compose plans that fit complex environmental systems? How do they align mismatched ecological and governance landscapes? We studied a small group of practitioners planning for groundwater sustainability to explore these questions. We recorded and transcribed their talk as they worked with geovisualization tools to diagnose and resolve future water shortages. Our findings showed how these planners crossed scales and levels as they reconsidered the relationships between groundwater supplies and consumers. While they recognized the urgency of aquifer overdraft, they complained about a lack of fine-grained hydrogeologic data, which they rely on for managing local water shortages.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-308
Number of pages18
JournalPlanning Practice and Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 27 2018


  • Scale
  • discourse analysis
  • geographic information systems
  • planning support systems (PSS)
  • scale mismatch
  • spatial planning

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