By: Russ Campbell
Why did the turtle cross the road? Change the “why” to a “where,” and conservation biologist Andrew Badje just might be able to tell you. Through his work with the Wisconsin Turtle Conservation Program, Badje collects turtle road crossing data to help map populations, especially at precarious road and rail crossings. Read More
Last month, the National Advisory Council on Environmental Policy and Technology (NACEPT), an EPA advisory council, transmitted a report to EPA titled Environmental Protection Belongs to the Public: A Vision for Citizen Science at EPA outlining thirteen specific recommendations for EPA. (Learn more about the report, its genesis, and NACEPT, in this post, coauthored byShannon Dosemagen, Public Lab and Alison Parker, ORISE Fellow hosted by EPA.)
Tomorrow, January 11, 3-4pm ET, join some of the co-authors of the NACEPT report for a #CitSciChat, presented by Caren Cooper @CoopSciScoop and sponsored by @SciStarter.
Darlene Cavalier @scicheer and @SciStarter
Bridgett Luther @BridgettCLuther
Alison Parker @athousandflies
Post questions and/or weigh in on questions including:
In NACPET @EPA report, what are key take-home messages abt #CitizenScience?
How can @EPA best support #CitizenScience (big data) & #CommunityScience (small data)?
How can #CitizenScience support @EPA_research? How can #CitSci support regulatory role of @EPA?
What sort of #CitizenScience might @EPA @EPA_research hope to fund in future?
How much do #sensor innovations matter to future of @EPA #CitizenScience?
Join this critical conversation on Twitter by following #CitSciChat tomorrow between 3pm and 4pm ET.
By: Elizabeth Kittrie, Senior Advisor for Data Science, National Institutes of Health
In the spirit of open science – a movement to make data and other information from scientific research available to everyone — the National Institutes of Health invites you to cast your vote and help us decide which of the projects competing for the Open Science Prize are the most innovative and most likely to have the greatest impact. Your vote plays a critical role in determining the three finalists for the ultimate selection of a grand prize winner of $230,000.00
In this competition, six finalist teams, composed of at least one U.S.-based and one international researcher, are using open data to improve human health. Open data refers to publicly-accessible data that is available for re-use by anyone. The US Department of Health and Human Services, the parent agency to NIH, is one of many government agencies around the world that has made health care data publicly available. You can find over three thousand health data sets publicly available via the healthdata.gov portal. Read More
Citizen science is a range of activities and projects through which people from all walks of life help advance scientific discovery. Citizen scientists bring science into the mainstream and make science relevant to their lives. As a scientist, I rely on citizen scientists as research collaborators. As a blogger, I’ve become a citizen science advocate giving three cheers to discoveries and projects. Every time I share stories about citizen science, the most frequent response I receive is skepticism about data quality. How could people – veritable strangers – without formal training in the sciences be of any authentic use to professional scientific research projects? How can people without scientific credential do work of sufficient quality to result in products of genuine scientific value? Is it really possible for science-society collaborations involving individuals with highly variable levels of expertise to produce reliable and trustworthy knowledge? Read More
Walking through Purisima Creek Redwoods Reserve in northern California, I am the paparazzi of Western sword ferns (Polystichum munitum). When I find one, I stop and click, click, click my smartphone photos and then approach boldly for a closer look. Are new leaves emerging as curled fronds or fiddleheads? Are there round spots called sori—reproductive structures that produce spores—on the underside of the fronds? Are these spots brown or green? And how many centimeters are the four longest uncurled fronds? I am really getting intimate here, probing for the most personal of details, and ready—yes—to post it all online on the Fern Watch website. Researchers there won’t handle this information discreetly. Instead they share among themselves and all their citizen scientists, using our data to learn more about how redwood forests are responding to climate change.
By Kaitlin Vortherms
For many new parents, trying to figure out what a baby needs can feel like taking care of a tiny alien. It doesn’t speak your language and yet you have to figure out what it needs to stay alive. And while there is no shortage of advice about how to manage your child’s eating and sleeping patterns, there hasn’t been much new research in this area to inform parents and pediatricians. So how do you know if you’re getting it right?
This is the gap researchers at New York University are bridging in the Baby Sleep Study, which aims to create a large database of eating and sleeping patterns in babies from across the world. In particular, the researchers note that developmental disorders, such as autism spectrum disorders, are often associated with disrupted sleep or digestion. By tracking these behaviors starting in infancy, the researchers hope to pinpoint just how early these patterns begin to emerge. Read More
At SciStarter, we aim to make it easy to find and join meaningful citizen science projects. Choose a location, activity, or topic to find appropriate adventures and learn more about the project and what tools (sensors, digital scales, rain gauges, etc) are needed to participate. But, for many projects and would-be participants, there are challenges to accessing the right tools for the job. (We define “tools” as equipment not usually found at home.) So, we took the follow steps to find a solution and are ready for your help to populate a new database of citizen science tools.
Through participation in the National Science Foundation’s Innovation Corps for Learning program, a collaboration of researchers between SciStarter and Arizona State University’s School for the Future of Innovation in Society and ASU’s School of Engineering adapted lean launch methods to explore and develop a better understanding of the ecosystem of stakeholders around citizen science tools. Read More