Volunteered Geographic Information

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Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI) is the harnessing of tools to create, assemble, and disseminate geographic data provided voluntarily by individuals (Goodchild, 2007). Some examples of this phenomenon are WikiMapia, OpenStreetMap, and Google MyMaps. These sites provide general base map information and allow users to create their own content by marking locations where various events occurred or certain features exist, but aren’t already shown on the base map.

VGI is a special case of the larger Web phenomenon known as user-generated content.


  • Goodchild, M. 2007. Citizens as Sensors: The World of Volunteered Geography. P. 1.