In the late nineties, it was Internet It was available to a very large group of people around the world – and the concept of “crowdsourcing” began to emerge.
Scientists saw the potential to engage an international community of citizen scientists with the skills to submit information to a database from anywhere. Perhaps just as importantly, it became possible to instantly access specialist groups with specific skills, characteristics, and interests.
The smartphone was another brilliant innovation of citizen science. Applications now allow citizen scientists to conduct research that previously required specialized equipment.
With the right apps, citizen scientists can easily identify plants and animals, measure temperature and air quality, determine colors and textures, and more — all without spending money on research tools.
Citizen scientists also use a range of “compact” smartphones, such as GPS receivers and cameras, which greatly enhance the value of their discoveries.
The impact of citizen science
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Citizen science has had a significant impact on research results in recent years. In fact, according to one study, citizen science data is of high quality and offers a number of advantages to researchers looking to “big data” for analysis.
Citizen science also offers a number of other positive outcomes: it engages citizens who are interested in learning about their local environment and about science in general. In addition, it provides students with opportunities to play an important role in the scientific research process, sometimes leading to Jobs in science.
Today, as more projects are developed with citizen scientists in mind, researchers are also developing research and training opportunities for citizen scientists of all ages. This promises improved outcomes for both researchers and citizen scientists themselves.
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Make sure to read too – Citizen Science: Know what it is and why it is
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