Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Election Cartographic Resources Available in Ball State University Libraries

Online Guide to Political Cartographic Resources in University Libraries

The presidential election is less than two months from today. Maps are an ideal tool for illustrating various information and statistics about elections. The widely-used "blue states and red states" explanation of states' party affiliations has become a cultural phrase and was made popular from an election map used during the 2000 Presidential election. Voters may find maps and other cartographic resources informative and helpful in making their election selections.

Now voters and other politicos can access an online subject guide for cartographic resources for political science and election research on the Geospatial Resources & Map Collection Web page. Cartographic Resources for Political Science and Elections Research in Ball State University Libraries lists the many maps, atlases, and other cartographic resources available throughout many departments of the Library. The guide is available on the “Subject Guides “ page at,,59405--,00.html.

The Geospatial Resources & Map Collection houses many maps and atlases about elections--both current and historical. Maps depicting newly-drawn Congressional districts, presidential election results since 1789, and even local city council districts are available in the GRMC. U.S. Census data is also available in the GIS lab of the GRMC.

The Atlas Collection also provides excellent election resources. The Routledge Historical Atlas of Presidential Elections, Student Atlas of World Politics, Atlas of African-American History and Politics, and The Historical Atlas of Political Parties in the United States Congress are very current and thorough sources of information. Atlas of American Politics 1960-2000 features several maps about elections: Voter Turnout; Democratic Campaign Stops, 2000; Republican Campaign Stops, 2000; Party Affiliation in the House of Representatives. But the atlas also contains more specific political maps: Senate Vote to Convict or Acquit President Clinton on Impeachment; Cabinet Secretaries' Home States; Supreme Court Justice Confirmation Votes; Women in State Legislatures. And this atlas also features maps describing issues important to voters: Per Capita Hazardous Waste Generation; Methods of Capital Punishment in Each State; Violent Crime Rate; Teacher Salaries; Abortion Rates; Firearm Injury Death Rate. There are even rare atlases covering the first elections in Kosovo and elections in Poland.

The General Collection includes many books and other atlases related to elections and voter issues, including Wealth Beyond Measure: An Atlas of New Economics and Gaia Atlas of Green Economics. Government Publications on the first floor of Bracken Library includes many statistical books, reports, and atlases about the elections, including Atlas of Foreign Relations and Census Atlas of the United States. Atlases in the Reference Collection also provide election information, including Atlas of Contemporary America: Portrait of a Nation—Politics, Economy, Environment, Ethnic and Religious Diversity, Health Issues, Demographic Patterns, Quality of Life, Crime, Personal Freedoms.

Subject guides for all resources in the Library—including political science and elections—are available at

Contact the staff of the GRMC for more information about the subject guides or any of these election resources.

No comments: