A review of Citizen Science within the Earth Sciences: potential benefits and obstacles

Lee, Kathryn A.; Lee, Jonathan R.; Bell, Patrick. 2020 A review of Citizen Science within the Earth Sciences: potential benefits and obstacles. Proceedings of the Geologists' Association, 131 (6). 605-617.

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The field of citizen science is a rapidly evolving type of scientific research focussing on the collaboration of motivated volunteers (citizen scientists) with professional scientists to generate new knowledge and information. In recent years, there has been a steady growth of Earth Science related citizen science projects that aim to build knowledge, awareness and ultimately resilience to key local- to global-scale environmental issues (e.g., geohazards, environmental monitoring). In addition, there has also been progression from small pilot studies to large data collection Earth Science citizen science initiatives that are used to underpin modelling. However, despite this, numerous operational and strategic challenges exist and whilst the awareness of citizen science has improved markedly, it is clear that the direct impact of citizen science on policy and decision making is still limited. Within this paper, we review these challenges alongside defining citizen science itself, and its benefits. The range of methods and applications of citizen science are explored through a series of case studies centred on geohazards, observations & classification, multi-topic, and education/outreach. The paper also explores future citizen science opportunities within Earth Science.

Item Type: Publication - Article
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ISSN: 00167878
Date made live: 05 Oct 2020 14:25 +0 (UTC)

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