What is a MapJam?

A MapJam brings together a small, dedicated group of people for a few hours to map as many community resources in their city or town as possible. Like when musicians jam, MapJams are social, fun and interactive meetups.

JOIN US for our 1st Plymouth MapJam
at Union Corner on Wed 26 July 2017, 6-9pm

>> MORE DETAILS: Facebook Event Page for MapJam #1
>> MORE DETAILS: Eventbrite RSVP for MapJam #1

Why do a MapJam?

Visual Arts Plymouth is interested in hosting MapJams to help arts and community organisers in Plymouth gather and map out information that makes people’s lives easier – whether you are interested in setting up new events, exhibitions, performances or projects, or simply want to have more fun attending something interesting in an unusual setting, accessing spaces, venues and resources is not always easy. We hope the maps generated through this event help to get things started – new conversations, new ideas and new things happening in our city.

“Maps of resources are also powerful organizing tools. Higher visibility and awareness of community resources can lead to more collaborations between existing projects and foster ideas for new ventures to fill in the gaps.’ Tom Llewellyn (Strategic Partnerships Director at

What will happen at the MapJam?

Hands-on mapping / brainstorming / gathering local knowledge about things like:

  • venues for live events
  • meeting spaces / co-working spaces / planning spaces
  • spaces that could be used for exhibitions
  • spaces that could be used for workshops
  • outdoor / unusual / under-used spaces in Plymouth
  • other community resources (things like equipment hire or sharing schemes, community growing, credit unions, business support for organisations & individuals etc)

Veggie Potluck dinner (a communal meal, where guests bring their own food to share)

Meeting other people involved in making things happen in Plymouth

What should I bring to the MapJam?

  • A laptop / tablet / other device (if you have one)
  • Some food / a simple (veggie) dish to share
  • Any liquid refreshment you’d like to drink while you’re here (soft drinks & BYOB)
  • Local knowledge / any info you already have on community resources in Plymouth
  • Enthusiasm & curiosity

We’ll have some paper / pens / post-its on hand to help the process and are starting to gather information via this shared document (which you can contribute to before the event if you’d like to). There is free WiFi at the venue.

We’ll also have plates / cups etc to make eating & drinking things as easy as possible.


IMAGE CREDIT: “Maps” image by Matthew Venn via Flickr- CC-BY-SA


VAP’s MapJam events use Open Space principals:

  • Whoever comes are the right people …
  • Whenever it starts is the right time …
  • Wherever it is, is the right place …
  • Whatever happens is the only thing that could have, be prepared to be surprised! …
  • When it’s over, it’s over (within this session) …
  • The Law of Two Feet – If at any time during our time together you find yourself in any situation where you are neither learning nor contributing, use your two feet, go someplace else. If you lose interest or get bored in the activity you are part of, or you feel you have accomplished or shared everything you can, the “polite” thing to do is going off to do something else (nobody will be offended).

Details for how to set up your own MapJam are available here: