Agile Citizen Science?

scistarter robotTitle: Agile Citizen Science?

Goal: Citizen science projects afford researchers new opportunities to acquire data from the field at times and places that are too inconvenient or costly for them to do personally. Currently, the majority of these projects are top-down, one-way affairs; researchers create a data sheet that describes the data they want collected, distribute it to participants, and wait for the data to stream in. But as more and more of these projects take advantage of digital platforms for collecting, receiving, and organizing data, new opportunities are revealed to make the process more collaborative, two-way, and iterative, or, to use a term from software development, more “agile”.

What would an agile citizen science project look like? What tools would it need to enable researchers to quickly formulate request for data collection in remote sites, receive and review the data, establish secure and possibly anonymous two-way communications with participants to refine and extend specifications for collecting data? What kinds of research might benefit from agile citizen science?

Why should you join this project? Join this group to participate in a brainstorm session to generate ideas and examples of possible agile citizen science projects and of the design features for a digital platform that would support those projects.

What skills are needed? Scientific knowledge, Communications experience, Enthusiasm, Ideas, UX/UI.

What skills will this project’s organizer bring? Software design (UI, client, server) & coding (PHP, Javascript), database design & coding (MySQL, Mongo), basic media editing skills.

What materials will this project’s organizer bring? A laptop.

What other materials would be valuable? Data from other projects, candy, research designs, post it notes, markers

Project website:

Contact: Steve Gano

Twitter: @SciStarter

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