Join in: Opportunities to Engage the Public through Citizen Science

The benefits and opportunities for using citizen science in an Extension setting abound. Mobile applications make it easy to engage the public as citizen scientists. Citizen science has the opportunity to decentralize research and expand location based research. For example, crop research is currently conducted at agricultural experiment farms. By using citizen science, gardeners, farmers, and ranchers could contribute to crop research throughout their state to give a better representation of how a crop fairs in their location and in non-experimental settings.

To engage the public in citizen science, especially if they are volunteers without any incentives, the process needs to be easy and straight forward.

Here are several examples of how Citizen Science is being used in an Extension Setting:

A Case Study Involving Pocket Gopher Damage Abatement in Alfalfa

Citizen Science as a REAL Environment for Authentic Scientific Inquiry

Nature’s Notebook and Extension: Engaging CitizenScientists and 4-H Youth to Observe a Changing Environment

To get started, here is a series of three articles you should check out:

Mobile Applications for Participatory Science

Tools for Creating Mobile Applications for Extension

Mobile Applications for Extension

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