Jeremy W. Crampton

jcr228's picture
Ph.D The Pennsylvania State University, 1994. Geography.

I was born in Ghana (Dormaa Ahenkro to be precise) but spent most of my childhood almost directly due north and 3,000 miles away in Cheshire and Shropshire along the Welsh borders.

Following my undergraduate education at Liverpool University, I studied at Penn State, getting my PhD in Geography in 1994.

I've held positions at Portsmouth University (UK), George Mason University, and Georgia State University in Atlanta, Georgia. I came to Kentucky in 2011, where I am an Associate Professor.


I work on the intersection of critical cartography/GIS and political geography. I'm specifically interested in national security, securitization and its political geographies and history. More broadly I've worked on critical mapping (including geoweb) as offering alternatives to the surveillant security state.

Currently, my way in to this vast topic is through intelligence, or more colloquially, spying. How do security, geographical intelligence (GEOINT) and state governmentality enroll geographical knowledges, mapping and GIS as technologies of government? What are the possibilities of a genealogy of (geo)espionage and scholarly knowledge production (scholar-intelligencers)? I often draw on the work of Michel Foucault to gain insights into these questions.

This tends to take place in two registers; one a historical genealogy of spatial and geographic knowledges, especially around geographic knowledge and the state, and the other an exploration of contemporary developments in the spatial geoweb that afford new possibilities of open geographies.

My areas of historical interest have focused on both World Wars and the relationship between geography and intelligence (espionage). My work on contemporary cyberspaces examines the possibilities of more democratic political engagement, specifically using new spatial media/GIS.

I'm very interested in hearing from prospective graduate students who would like to work on any of these issues. A good way to see my current interests is at my blog, OpenGeography.

My recent research has been on the contributions of geographers and cartographers to American intelligence. Specifically, I have worked on the World War II era OSS, America's first spy agency, and more recently the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA).

A story about this with illustrations of the maps can be found here. An example product of the OSS is below, an amazing Theater Map that cleverly marries four Lambert projections together.

OSS Theater Map

OSS Theater Map (Source: AGSL)

Selected Publications: 
My most recent book is Mapping: A Critical Introduction to Cartography and GIS. Wiley-Blackwell Publishers, Oxford and New York, 2010.

Recent Articles

2014. "The New Political Economy of Geographical Intelligence." With Susan Roberts and Ate Poorthuis. Annals of the Association of American Geographers.

2013. "Space, Territory, Geography." In A Companion to Foucault (C. Falzon, T. O'Leary, & J. Sawicki, Eds). Wiley-Blackwell, pp. 384-400.

2013. Mappings. In The Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Cultural Geography (N.C. Johnson, R.H. Schein, & J. Winders, Eds). Wiley-Blackwell, pp. 423-436. doi:10.1002/9781118384466.ch35

2013. "Geographical Intelligence." Oxford Bibliographies Online (B. Warf, Ed.). (

2012. "Disciplining the AGS?” Author Meets the Critics on K. Morin Civic Discipline: Geography in America, 1860-1890. Geographical Review, 102(4), pp. 539-541. doi: 10.1111/j.1931-0846.2012.00174.x

2012  “Informational Citizenship, the ‘Geobiopolitical’ Subject and the State.” Author Meets the Critics on M. Hannah Dark Territory. Political Geography, 31 (3), 186-187. doi: 10.1016/j.polgeo.2012.01.002.

2012.  “Outsourcing the State.” Geopolitical Forum. “Leaky Geopolitics: The Ruptures and Transgressions of WikiLeaks” edited by S. Singer & H. Chi, Geopolitics, 17, 687-691. doi: 10.1080/14650045.2012.698401.

2011. “Cartography: Cartographic Calculations of Territory.” Progress in Human Geography, 35(1), pp. 92-103. doi:10.1177/0309132509358474.

2011. "Mapping Intelligence. American Geographers and the Office of Strategic Services and GHQ/SCAP (Tokyo)." With Trevor Barnes. In S. Kirsch and C. Flint (eds), Reconstructing Conflict. Ashgate, pp. 227-251.

2009. "Cartography: Maps 2.0." Progress in Human Geography, 33(1), pp. 91-100. doi:10.1177/0309132508094074

2008-2010. Editor-in-Chief. Cartographica: The International Journal for Geographic Information and Geovisualization.


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