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NOAA - Citizen Science Community of Practice
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NOAA Support for Citizen Science and Crowdsourcing

News and Announcements

White House Promotes Citizen Science and Crowdsourcing - posted October 2015
To raise awareness of citizen science and crowdsourcing tools and encourage more Americans to take advantage of them, the White has undertaken a number of steps described in this blog post

NOAA has a rich tradition of supporting citizen science. Today that tradition is being carried on through a portfolio of projects fostered and supported across the Agency

NOAA Community of Practice

A NOAA Citizen Science Community of Practice was launched in November of 2013. The Community of Practice is facilitated by NOAA's Office of Education and relies on grassroots participation from community members throughout the Agency. The primary areas of focus are:

Participants collect rocky intertidal and sandy beach data in national marine sanctuaries on the California coast.
Long-term Monitoring Program and Experiential Training for Students (LiMPETS) program participants collect rocky intertidal and sandy beach data in national marine sanctuaries on the California coast. (Credit: Daniel Dreifuss, Santa Maria Times)
  • a) compiling and sharing best practices,
  • b) sharing resources, and
  • c) creating a searchable database of NOAA's citizen science projects.

Since its formation, this community has grown steadily, with over 150 members engaged.  A volunteer Steering Committee, made up of members from across NOAA, provides guidance on how the Community of Practice can best be supported as it continues to evolve.  

If you would like more information on the Community of Practice or are a member of the NOAA community and would like to join, please contact John McLaughlin at john.mclaughlin@noaa.gov.



Volunteers classify storms from satellite imagery in the Cyclone Center Project.
Volunteers classify storms from satellite imagery in the Cyclone Center Project. (Credit: Cyclone Center)

Projects

There are over 65 projects represented within the NOAA Citizen Science Community of Practice. It is estimated that these projects result in more than half a million volunteer hours per year (equal to more than 239 person-years of effort).  You can learn about many of these projects in the Database of Federal Crowdsourcing and Citizen Science Projects


Sea Grant's Coastal Research Volunteer (CRV) Program
Volunteers in New Hampshire Sea Grant's  Coastal Research Volunteer (CRV) Program monitor seagrass. (Credit: Rebecca Zeiber, N.H. Sea Grant)

Broader Efforts

NOAA is an active member of the Federal Community of Practice for Crowdsourcing and Citizen Science, and worked in collaboration with this group and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to create a Federal Citizen Science and Crowdsourcing Toolkit to assist those interested in utilizing these approaches in the federal government.  Additionally, NOAA is active within the Citizen Science Association which provides a coordination mechanism for the field.