My name is Carolyn Fish. I am a PhD Candidate at Penn State. I study how we design and think about climate change as a function of the maps we see in the media. How can we think and talk about climate change without maps? I believe maps are central to understanding the science of climate change, the discourse around the sometimes contentious topic of climate change, and how we might feel about changes to our environment and the hope we have for the future. My other research interests include: renewable energy mapping and the design of dynamic maps
I am also the co-organizer of Maptime State College, a community oriented meetup group focused on learning open-source mapping technology for all ages. Each month a local mapping expert comes to teach a new type of open-source mapping technology. Come join us at Maptime State College!
Before coming back to Penn State, I was a cartographer at Esri in Redlands, CA, the makers of ArcGIS. At Esri, I worked with the solutions team to design basemap templates and develop thematic map content for specific user communities. I also worked on iconic design of point symbols for significant activities and incidents, support demonstrations of software, and collaborated with software developers to improve the functionality and capability of the product.
Between 2008 and 2010, I was a masters student at Michigan State University in Geography. My master's thesis research evaluated how well people detect changes in animated choropleth maps. I concluded that most map readers often have difficulty detecting changes in animated maps and despite missing many important changes, called change blindness, readers often fail to even realize their own failures.