Berman: Urban Studies Showcase

In his People and Design course, Dr. Richard Berman has explored graphic design and interactive maps with his students. In the 2010 course, students completed a City Comforts exercise where each student chose to either create an individual poster or contribute to an interactive class map. The class map uses Google Maps, original photographs, images and videos from the web and hyperlinks to create an absorbing story of the details tha t make Philadelphia uniquely comfortable from 20 attractive new trash cans to decorated parking lots. Browsing the map reveals the aspects of Philadelphia that different students found noteworthy, and the student comments reflect individual attitudes and perceptions of city life. In his 2010 assignment for the City Comforts exercise in the People and Design course, Dr. Berman discusses geotagging, use of cell-phones and the joy of finding the best aspects of city comforts.

Browse the Class Map to see all the student-selected images and comments, or click on the two samples below.


In October 2010, Dr. Berman shared his work with Google Maps at the Engaging Students Through Technology symposium.

In an earlier version of this exercise documented in his 2008 assignment, Dr. Berman's students produced posters in the Vitale Digital Media Lab with beautiful examples of graphic design. These exemplary posters show the different ways in which students visualized city comforts:

City Comforts  
Marina Bernal

Poster by Scott Kyle 
Scott Kyle

11 Guidelines for Building an Urban Village  
Lauren Priori