Abstract: This article examines certain guiding tenets of science journalism in the era of big data by focusing on its engagement with citizen science. Having placed citizen science in historical context, it highlights early interventions intended to help establish the basis for an alternative epistemological ethos recognising the scientist as citizen and the citizen as…

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Abstract: As part of a national research program studying the sources, distribution, and effects of litter entering the ocean, we established a national citizen science program engaging nearly 7000 primary and secondary students, teachers and corporate participants in collecting marine debris data around Australia’s coastline. Citizen scientists undertook a one-day training program, which addressed data…

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Excerpt: Phone-wielding and bare-armed, I follow Scott Edmunds and Mendel Wong to a small park in the Mid-Levels area of Hong Kong Island, where a dengue outbreak occurred last year. We hit the jackpot within five minutes – a swarm of mosquitoes around a tree. With his phone, Wong snaps a picture of one that…

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As citizen science methodologies mature and number of participants increases, it is becoming more possible to understand the role and necessity of experts in relation to data quality. This article is a great example of how expertise can be assessed and utilized. — LFF — Summary: Citizen science data are increasingly making valuable contributions to…

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Abstract: Citizen science opens new pathways that can complement traditional scientific practice. Intuition and reasoning often make humans more effective than computer algorithms in various realms of problem solving. In particular, a simple visual comparison of spatial patterns is a task where humans are often considered to be more reliable than computer algorithms. However, in…

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Editor’s Choice: This article will get your mental wheels turning about identity, power, and the nature of work at disciplinary boundaries. The authors carefully scrutinize words to unpack divergent connotations, examining how positive, neutral, and negative associations influence us. This is a must-read for all who aspire to make “citizen science” a just, inclusive, and…

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Excerpt: Scientists expect Africa to be hardest hit by climate change: its dependence on agriculture, hot temperatures, and poor infrastructure mean its citizens are likely to feel the pressure of a changing climate more than most others. But there are big gaps in our knowledge of how ecosystems and microclimates work. “We don’t have an…

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Editor’s Choice: This is an excellent example of real “co-created” science between a non-salaried scientist (aka citizen scientist) and salaried scientists. –LFF– Excerpt: Amateur naturalists from the UK have a distinguished pedigree, from Henry Walter Bates and Marianne North, to Alfred Russel Wallace and Mary Anning. But arguably, the rise of post-war academia in the…

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Abstract: Reef Check Australia (RCA) has collected data on benthic composition and cover at > 70 sites along > 1000 km of Australia’s Queensland coast from 2002 to 2015. This paper quantifies the accuracy, precision and power of RCA benthic composition data, to guide its application and interpretation. A simulation study established that the inherent…

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Abstract: Small-scale pollution events involve the release of potentially harmful substances into the marine environment. These events can affect all levels of the ecosystem, with damage to both fauna and flora. Numerous reporting structures are currently available to document spills, however there is a lack of information on small-scale events due to their magnitude and…

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