Friday, August 05, 2016

Olympic Games Maps from Ball State University Libraries

Faster, Higher, Stronger…Gone Wrong: Mapping Olympic Scandals

The 2016 Summer Olympic Games open in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, today.  Along with the excitement and anticipation of competition and sport, the news is also focusing on poor water quality, unsafe housing for athletes, doping controversies, and the Zika virus. 

ESRI, the world’s leading producer of GIS software, has created a Story Map of the top Olympic scandals of all time.  Adolph Hitler’s 1936 Berlin Olympics, the 1980 and 1984 Russian and American boycotts,  and the 1968 Mexico City podium protests are well known, but this “top 21” includes scandals beginning in 776 B.C.  And one scandal at the Olympics in St. Louis involved the winner of the marathon actually riding in a car for most of the race.

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) provides access to ESRI GIS software and online tutorials, datasets, online mapping applications, and in-house GIS data.  The GIS Specialist is also available for one-on-one research assistance.  And GIS software is available throughout Bracken Library, the Architecture Library, and in the Science-Health Science Library.

The GRMC has also created a special exhibit honoring the Olympics.  The front windows of the GRMC on the second floor of Bracken Library include maps of Brazil, a map showing the hometowns of Indiana Olympians in Rio, and a map about Jesse Owens and his outstanding performance at the 1936 Summer Olympics.  And teachers can incorporate the Olympics into a geography lesson created by the GRMC requiring students to map the Games sites and consider why only three cities in the Southern Hemisphere have hosted.

For more information about using GIS software or incorporating maps in the classroom, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097.

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