Thursday, August 11, 2011

Some More Citizen Science Defintions to Consider...

Photo Courtesy: Booksworm
I've been working on our citizen science definitions project over the last few days and came across a few articles that have helped me in my own understanding and may help prod you too as you think about the issue. So I offer them here below without any editorial additions.  But please let me know your comments. I can write essays on each but I'd like to hear your thoughts first.  After all, I'd love for this to be a team discussion too.

“[Citizen Science is defined as]...partnerships between volunteers and scientists that answer real-world questions” Wiggins, A. and Crowston, K. "Designing Virtual Organizations for Citizen Science" presented at IFIP Working Group 8.2 OASIS workshop, December 2009
"[Citizen Science is defined as]...scientific activities in which non-professional scientists volunteer to participate in data collection, analysis and dissemination of a scientific project..." Po Ve Sham blogpost dated July 20, 2011
"Citizen science enlists the public in collecting large quantities of data across an array of habitats and locations over long spans of time" - Rick Bonney, Caren B. Cooper, Janis Dickinson, Steve Kelling, Tina Phillips, Kenneth V. Rosenberg and Jennifer Shirk "Citizen Science: A Developing Tool for Expanding Science Knowledge and Scientific Literacy" 2009 BioScience. 59 (11). P. 977-984.
"The term 'Citizen Scientists' refers top volunteers who participate as field assistants in scientific studies.  Citizen scientists help monitor wild animals and plants or other environemental markers, but they are not paid for their assistance, not are they necessarily even scientists.  Most are amateurs who volunteer to assist ecological research because they love the outdoors or are concerned about environmental trends and problems and want to do something about them.  Typically, volunteers do not analyze data or write scientific papers, but they are essential to gathering information on which studies are based." - Cohn, Jeffrey P. "Citizen Science: Can Volunteers do Real Research?"  BioScience 58(3):192-197. 2008
"A citizen scientist is a volunteer who colects and/or processes data as part of a scientific enquiry." - Silvertown, Johnathan "A New Dawn for Citizen Science" Trends in Ecology & Evolution Volume 24, Issue 9, September 2009, Pages 467-471
Science: 1) a branch of knowledge or study dealing with a body of facts or truths systematically arranged and showing the operation of general laws: the mathematical sciences. 2) systematic knowledge of the physical or material world gained through observation and experimentation." -
What do you think?  I see a number of items that are missing but also see a number of areas we should explore.  Let me know in the comments below.