Scottish Local Councils, Electoral Wards & Local Councillors – Political Knowledge Atlas (2 Feb 2020)
There are 1,227 Local Councillors elected to 354 multi (3 or 4)-member Electoral Wards in Scotland’s 32 Local Councils every 5 years. Though these politicians fundamentally affect our lives on a day-to-day basis through enacting their own party’s local policies, and their oversight of bodies delivering essential services at the local level, it’s difficult to get the big picture AND the detail, AND how both have changed over time, in the one source. This 2nd edition of the first ever ‘national local’ political knowledge atlas map of Scotland helps solve that problem.
Based on the latest Scottish Local Council Electoral Wards General & Geographic Knowledge Atlas, the embedded contextual data fields in the seed branches for each individual electoral ward & the wards as a whole are now replaced by spreadsheet tables quantifying the number of councillors by party at the ward and whole council level, as well as the overall political control, whilst the attached multiple links to general, geographic & electoral knowledge resources are retained.
There are also now knowledge seed branches for all the current Local Councillors in each ward, with those that have retired or died since they were last elected retained as sub-branches for reference. As well as their official portrait picture, there are attached links to their official profile page(s) & entry in the register of members interests. Notable changes in circumstance since they were last elected are recorded as a branch note.
All elements are coloured by party when appropriate to make this map a truly ‘visual’ political knowledge base of all Scotland’s local councils, electoral wards and elected councillors.
** NEW FOR 2nd EDITION (v1.1) – Updated for the local by-elections that have occured since the first edition was published on 30 September 2019, with knowledge seed branches added for all the newly elected councillors (those of the predecessors are retained as sub-branches for reference). Also for all councillors the addition of links to their page on the Who Can I Vote For? by Democracy Club website, which contains crowd-sourced details of all the candidates standing in each ward or constituency at every UK local & parliamentary election / by-election since 2016. **
Scotland The Map Project Director and Knowledge Mappers Founder & CEO
The options to view / download this Scottish Local Councils, Electoral Wards & Local Councillors Political Knowledge Atlas (2 Feb 2020) map are in the panel below. If you are new to our maps then please browse the Knowledge Map Mini Guide first before viewing / downloading. Further down this page you can also see a summary of the map content, the main features, and some fun facts 😉 we discovered when compiling it. Please provide your feedback, or suggest additional content, in the map comments, and please also share it with your networks. You can also find other maps using the map finder panel, or the map of maps.
Knowledge Map Mini Guide
Scottish Local Councils, Electoral Wards & Local Councillors – Political Knowledge Atlas (2 Feb 2020)
Politics & politicians fundamentally affect all our lives on a day-to-day basis, but it’s difficult to get the big picture AND the detail, AND how both have changed over time, in the one source. This knowledge map helps solve that problem, at least as far as the 1,227 Local Councillors elected to 354 multi-member Electoral Wards in Scotland’s 32 Local Councils goes.
Using the latest Scottish Local Council Electoral Wards General & Geographic Knowledge Atlas as a base, we have added knowledge seed branches for all 1,227 current Local Councillors, as well as for those that have retired or died since they were elected at the last Scottish National Local Election on 4th May 2017. As well as their official portrait picture, there are attached links to their official profile pages & entry in the register of members interests, as well as changes since they were last elected due to death, resignation or internal local party shenanigans as a topic note. We’ve also adapted the seed branches for each individual electoral ward & the wards as a whole in the basemap by replacing the embedded contextual data fields with spreadsheets quantifying the number of councillors by party at the ward and whole council level, as well as the overall political control. All elements are coloured by party when appropriate to make this map a truly ‘visual’ political knowledge base as well as the first ever national directory knowledge map of Scottish Local Councillors.
**New for v1.1 – Updated for the local by-elections that have occured since the first edition was published on 30 September 2019, with knowledge seed branches added for all the newly elected councillors (those of the predecessors are retained as sub-branches for reference). Other changes – due to death, resignation or internal local party shenanigans – are recorded as notes where they are known.**
'Knowledge Seed' Branches
With embedded features and attached multiple hyperlinks & index marker tags, ‘seed branches’ provide a ‘base level’ of contextual knowledge resources about the subject, which is retained if the seed branch is repurposed / used in other maps in future.
**NOTE – This ‘visually rich’ knowledge map has a large number of ‘seed branches’ which, with their associated embedded images, greatly increases the size of the HMTL file when they are all included. So users on slower internet connections and/or more limited capacity devices such as mobile phones can still work with it, we have removed varying amount of the image content and made the map available as ‘hi-fi’ (no images removed), ‘mid-fi’ (all 1,227 local councillor images removed) and ‘lo-fi’ (all ward location maps removed) versions. All versions can be accessed from the map viewing / download options panel.**
Knowledge Resource Link Collections
The links to official / definitive / ‘plain old useful’ public domain knowledge resources contained in these branches is the main focus of this map. Each link is attached to a single sub-branch which desctibes what it is, with sub-branches grouped into related collections, such as ‘General Knowledge Resources’ or ‘Geographic Knowledge Resources’. This makes for easier, more ‘thumb friendly’ browsing & knowledge discovery. Sub-branches can easily become ‘seed points’ if users start adding newly new knowledge discovered during their browsing.
**NOTE – There are no knowledge link collection sub-branches in this map at the moment, only multiple hyperlinks on seed branches. With 1,227 councillors in Scotland, every potential additional link ‘type’ will added 1,227 more branches to the map. Aftr embedded images, additional branches are the next biggest factor affecting map handling performance. We will however experiment in future editions**
We are continually striving to find further, freely accessible in the public domain definitive / official / plain old useful 🙂 knowledge resources to link to in our maps, as well as keeping the existing links up to date. The changelogs below summarise the actions undertaken to initially create – and subsequently update – this knowledge map.
Here are some of the ‘fun facts’ 😉 about Scotland’s 354 Local Council Electoral Wards and 1,227 Local Councillors that we have discovered (and embedded!) during the process of creating this map…
Hillhead Ward [Glasgow City Council]
North, West and Central Sutherland Ward [Highland Council]
Lerwick North Ward [Shetland Islands Council]
Southside/Newington Ward [City of Edinburgh Council]
An Taobh Siar agus Nis Ward [Comhairle nan Eilean Siar]
Southside/Newington Ward [City of Edinburgh Council]
Councillors - Female: 362 Male: 865
Councillors - Female: 0 Male: 31
Comhairle nan Eilean Siar
Councillors - Female: 30 Male: 55
Glasgow City Council
We take full advantage of MindManager’s many unique ‘information cartography’ features when creating our unique maps so we can pack in 1000’s of ‘bits’ of knowledge into a single, visually structured, intuitive to navigate document that can be easily shared. Here are the main features of this Scottish Local Councils, Electoral Wards & Local Councillors Political Knowledge Atlas (2 Feb 2020) …
Big Map With 100's Of Branches & Links And Capacity For Plenty More
With 8,670 knowledge resource links over 2,484 branches, this map is a useful, contextual knowledge resource in it’s own right, as well as being a visually structured index of the best definitive / official / plain old useful knowledge resources available in the public domain about the political makeup of Scotland’s 1,227 Local Councillors, 354 Electoral Wards and 32 Local Councils. Thanks to MindManager’s unique capabilities it has plenty of spare capacity for further content to be added in the future.
Main Branches Create Robust Visual Framework For 'Seed Branches'
The 1st level branches form the main (‘org-tree’) visual framework within which the map content of interest sits. It is a simple ‘A – Z’ layout, with the 32 Scottish Local Councils arranged alphabetically in 5 columns of approximately equal sizes to pack as much in to a ‘single screen view’ as possible.
Visually Rich 'Knowledge Seed' Branch For Every Scottish Local Council
The 2nd level branches are ‘knowledge seed points’ for each Scottish Local Council, to which links to public domain knowledge resources about them are attached. Visually rich & information dense, they contain the name & official area identifier codes in variably formatted (‘rich’) text – a unique MindManager featue. Visually the combined logo & thumbnail location map image aids user navigation and provides spatial context, whilst the variation in topic shape indicates the status of the borders with neighbouring councils – all coastlal (ie. island), mixed or all land (ie. landlocked). The full list of knowledge embedded within, and attached to, this seed topic is given in the map summary above.
Visually Rich Electoral Wards, Local Councillors & Political Control 'Seed Branches'
The 3rd level branches are ‘knowledge seed points’ for the political make up of the Local Council, both in terms of wards – there is a good quality thumbnail image (ie. still readable & usable when zoomed in) of the official Local Government Boundary Commission ward overview map to provide spatial context – whilst a table shows the current total local councillors by party, coloured by party. The political control of the council is also shown – be it an overall majority rule by one party group, a minority administration or a coalition between 2 or more party groups (including ‘independent’ councillors). There are also multiple hyperlinks to public domain general, geographic & electoral knowledge resources about the council wards as a whole. The full list of knowledge embedded within, and attached to, this seed topic is given in the map summary above.
Visually Rich 'Poilitical Knowledge Seed' Branch For Each Of Scotland's 334 Electoral Wards
The 4th level branches are political ‘knowledge seed points’ for individual electoral wards. As for the ‘Local Council’, they are a visually rich mixture of embedded and attached knowledge. They contain the name & official ward identifier codes in variably formatted (‘rich’) text, and a thumbnail location map image to aid user navigation and provide spatial context. This is supplemented by the variation in topic shape, which indicates the status of the borders with neighbouring electoral wards – all coastlal (ie. island), mixed or all land (ie. landlocked). There is also a table showing the current total local councillors by party, coloured by party, as well as multiple hyperlinks to public domain general, geographic & electoral knowledge resources about the ward. The full list of knowledge embedded within, and attached to, this seed topic is given in the map summary above.
*An asterisk indicates noteworthy happenings in the ward since the last Local Council Election – such as the resignation / death of a councillor and the subsequent by-election to elect their successor – which are recorded in the attached topic note.
Visually Rich 'Political Knowledge Seed' Branch For Each Of Scotland's 1,227 Currently Elected Local Councillors
The 5th level branches are ‘knowledge seed points’ for individual Local Councillors, coloured by their poitical party allegiance. They contain the councillors name prefixed by ‘Cllr’ and suffixed by ther party allegiance in brackets, as well as a thumbnail of their official portrait picture. Their ward and council names are also included to make it easier to keep track of who’s who and where’s where’ when many councillor branches are open on screen at one time. There are also multiple hyperlinks to public domainl knowledge resources about the councillor. This is currently limited to their official councillor page, which will contain a variable amount of useful information depending on the individual council. There is also a link to their official register of interests if it is not contained within their main page. The full list of knowledge embedded within, and attached to, this seed topic is given in the map summary above.
*An asterisk indicates noteworthy changes in circumstances of the local councillor since the last Local Council Election, which are recorded in the attached topic note. This couls be losing the support of their party, on a temporary or permamnent basis, or their resignation or death. If they are no longer a councillor the reason why will be shown in [square brackets] and all the text will be in italics. Eeventually they will be moved to become a sub-branch of their successor once the by-election has taken place.
Attached Multiple Hyperlinks To Public Domain Knowledge Resources
Seed Branches have multiple hyperlinks attached to them (yet another unique feature of MindManager maps), which link to the best definitive / official / plain old useful knowledge resources available in the public domain about the subject. The ‘definable link text’ gives clarty as to the resource being linked to (which can be very variable if left to the default). As well as increasing the amount of knowledge that can be ‘squeezed’ into a map without increasing the ‘visual clutter’ of additional branches, it means these links can be retained if the seed branches are used in other maps, or this map is re-purposed. The full list of multiple knowledge resource hyperlinks attached to all the seed topics in this map is given in the map summary above.
Index Marker Tag Groups Enable 'Geo Intelligent' & Other Map Filtering
Branches in the map may be tagged with one or more ‘index markers’ from one or more ‘marker groups’. These enable intelligent map filtering and quick navigation. Many of the tags are ‘geographic’ in nature such that branches are tagged with ‘where’ they are – eg. administrative or electoral areas. This gives the map in-built ‘spatial intelligence’ and the ability to be ‘geo-filtered’. (MindManager software users can copy and paste any of the marker groups in any other maps). The full list of index marker tags attached to all the seed topics in this map is given in the map summary above.
Embedded Data Elements Provide Additional Contextual Knowledge
Data features embedded within seed branches – like spreadsheets, charts & data fields (another unique MindManager feature) – provide another ‘channel’ of knowlegde that adds context to the more detailed knowledge contained in the public domain resources linked to in the map. Just like in a normal spreadsheet, some of the data field values may be ‘auto-calculated’ from the others using formulae, creating data not found elsewhere in the public domain. They can also be used to ‘conditionally format’ the map eg. colouring the branches based on a particular data value (the equivelant of ‘thematic mapping’ in GIS).
Map Legend Branch Describes Each Topic 'Type' With Links To Further Information
Every map needs to have a legend that explains the cartographic structure, colours and symbology used. The ‘Map Legend’ branch describes the sub-components of each ‘type’ of map branch, with links to further knowledge resources where necessary.
'Contributing Online Knowledge-bases Branch' With Links To Further Information
We hunt down and assess many official / definitive / at least practical & useful online knowledge resources in the process of creating our maps. The ‘Contributing Online Knowledge-bases’ branch has links to all the ones that are actually linked to in the main map content, as well as some others that are a good source of general knowledge about the subject. It is a frustrating fact of life that some resources are organised better than others, and not all are ‘linkable to’ at the individual ‘building block’ level and so can’t be included in seed branches.
'Voter Help For Scottish Elections Branch' With Links To Useful Resources
The ‘Voter Help For Scottish Elections’ branch has links to useful links to help you registering to vote, find out which Local Council Electoral Ward, Scottish Parliament Constituency & Region or UK Parliament Constituency you live in, notice of any upcoming elections in your area and where to vote in them, and what the voting record for your incumbent MP’s or MSP’s.
To know that we know what we know, and to know that we do not know what we do not know, that is true knowledge.
Tae ken that we ken whit we ken, and tae ken that we dinnae ken whit we dinnae ken, that's whit it's aw aboot, ye ken?
And whilst we're aboot it, tae ken where the hell ye get haud of whit ye need to ken, when ye need to ken it, if ye dinnae ken it awready?
These knowledge maps show the building blocks of Scotland as they exist today, but they can also be used to strategically think about what could be in the future, and operationally plan the delivery of what will be tomorrow.
The task is, not so much to see what no one has yet seen; but to think what nobody has yet thought, about that which everybody sees.
A map is the greatest of all epic poems. It's lines and colours show the realisation of great dreams.