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Citizen science

Simon Otjes
In political science the economic left-right dimension plays a central role. A growing body of evidence shows that the economic policy preferences of a large segment of citizens do not scale sufficiently. Using Mokken scale analysis, this study determines the causes of this phenomenon. Differences in the extent to which the economic policy preferences of citizens fit the left-right dimension can be explained in terms of the interaction between individual level and political system-level variables: citizens who spend more attention to politicians with views that conform to the left-right dimension, have views that conform to the left-right dimension...
2018: Social Indicators Research
Ali K Yetisen
Biohacking is a do-it-yourself citizen science merging body modification with technology. The motivations of biohackers include cybernetic exploration, personal data acquisition, and advocating for privacy rights and open-source medicine. The emergence of a biohacking community has influenced discussions of cultural values, medical ethics, safety, and consent in transhumanist technology.
March 14, 2018: Trends in Biotechnology
Elizabeth A MacDonald, Eric Donovan, Yukitoshi Nishimura, Nathan A Case, D Megan Gillies, Bea Gallardo-Lacourt, William E Archer, Emma L Spanswick, Notanee Bourassa, Martin Connors, Matthew Heavner, Brian Jackel, Burcu Kosar, David J Knudsen, Chris Ratzlaff, Ian Schofield
A glowing ribbon of purple light running east-west in the night sky has recently been observed by citizen scientists. This narrow, subauroral, visible structure, distinct from the traditional auroral oval, was largely undocumented in the scientific literature and little was known about its formation. Amateur photo sequences showed colors distinctly different from common types of aurora and occasionally indicated magnetic field-aligned substructures. Observations from the Swarm satellite as it crossed the arc have revealed an unusual level of electron temperature enhancement and density depletion, along with a strong westward ion flow, indicating that a pronounced subauroral ion drift (SAID) is associated with this structure...
March 2018: Science Advances
DeAnna E Beasley, Clint A Penick, Nana S Boateng, Holly L Menninger, Robert R Dunn
Many ectotherms show a decrease in body size with increasing latitude due to changes in climate, a pattern termed converse Bergmann's rule. Urban conditions-particularly warmer temperatures and fragmented landscapes-may impose stresses on development that could disrupt these body size patterns. To test the impact of urbanization on development and latitudinal trends in body size, we launched a citizen science project to collect periodical cicadas ( Magicicada septendecim ) from across their latitudinal range during the 2013 emergence of Brood II...
March 2018: Ecology and Evolution
Becki Lawson, Robert A Robinson, Mike P Toms, Kate Risely, Susan MacDonald, Andrew A Cunningham
Provision of supplementary food for wild birds at garden feeding stations is a common, large-scale and year-round practice in multiple countries including Great Britain (GB). While these additional dietary resources can benefit wildlife, there is a concomitant risk of disease transmission, particularly when birds repeatedly congregate in the same place at high densities and through interactions of species that would not normally associate in close proximity. Citizen science schemes recording garden birds are popular and can integrate disease surveillance with population monitoring, offering a unique opportunity to explore inter-relationships between supplementary feeding, disease epidemiology and population dynamics...
May 5, 2018: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences
Angela J Dean, Emma K Church, Jenn Loder, Kelly S Fielding, Kerrie A Wilson
Citizen science programs enable community involvement in scientific research. In addition to fostering greater science literacy, some citizen science programs aim to foster engagement in environmental issues. However, few data are available to indicate whether and how citizen science programs can achieve greater environmental engagement. We survey individuals choosing to attend one of seventeen reef citizen science events and examine the extent to which attendees reported three indicators of greater environmental engagement: (i) willingness to share information, (ii) increased support for marine conservation and citizen science, and (iii) intentions to adopt a new behavior...
March 2, 2018: Journal of Environmental Management
Julie Lewis, Corinne R Boudreau, James W Patterson, Jonathan Bradet-Legris, Vett K Lloyd
Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne disease in North America and Europe, and on-going surveillance is required to monitor the spread of the tick vectors as their populations expand under the influence of climate change. Active surveillance involves teams of researchers collecting ticks from field locations with the potential to be sites of establishing tick populations. This process is labor- and time-intensive, limiting the number of sites monitored and the frequency of monitoring. Citizen science initiatives are ideally suited to address this logistical problem and generate high-density and complex data from sites of community importance...
March 2, 2018: Healthcare (Basel, Switzerland)
Anna Cigarini, Julián Vicens, Jordi Duch, Angel Sánchez, Josep Perelló
Mental disorders have an enormous impact in our society, both in personal terms and in the economic costs associated with their treatment. In order to scale up services and bring down costs, administrations are starting to promote social interactions as key to care provision. We analyze quantitatively the importance of communities for effective mental health care, considering all community members involved. By means of citizen science practices, we have designed a suite of games that allow to probe into different behavioral traits of the role groups of the ecosystem...
February 28, 2018: Scientific Reports
Jacob Bruggemann, Gabriel C Lander, Andrew I Su
Extraction of particles from cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) micrographs is a crucial step in processing single-particle datasets. Although algorithms have been developed for automatic particle picking, these algorithms generally rely on two-dimensional templates for particle identification, which may exhibit biases that can propagate artifacts through the reconstruction pipeline. Manual picking is viewed as a gold-standard solution for particle selection, but it is too time-consuming to perform on data sets of thousands of images...
February 24, 2018: Journal of Structural Biology
David Dodell-Feder, Diana I Tamir
Scholars from both the social sciences and the humanities have credited fiction reading with a range of positive real-world social effects. Research in psychology has suggested that readers may make good citizens because fiction reading is associated with better social cognition. But does fiction reading causally improve social cognition? Here, we meta-analyze extant published and unpublished experimental data to address this question. Multilevel random-effects meta-analysis of 53 effect sizes from 14 studies demonstrated that it does: compared to nonfiction reading and no reading, fiction reading leads to a small, statistically significant improvement in social-cognitive performance (g = ...
February 26, 2018: Journal of Experimental Psychology. General
Audrey Coreau, Jean-Baptiste Narcy, Sarah Lumbroso
The development of ecosystem knowledge is an essential condition for effective environmental management but using available knowledge to solve environmental controversies is still difficult in "real" situations. This paper explores the conditions under which ecological knowledge could contribute to the environmental strategies and actions of stakeholders at science-policy interface. Ecological restoration of the Seine estuary is an example of an environmental issue whose overall management has run into difficulties despite the production of a large amount of knowledge by a dedicated organization, GIP Seine Aval...
February 22, 2018: Environmental Management
Tyrone J Tolbert, Shinnosuke Nakayama, Maurizio Porfiri
The advent of automated tracking software has significantly reduced the time required to record movement trajectories, thereby facilitating behavioral studies of zebrafish. However, results are substantially influenced by tracking errors, such as loss and misidentification of individuals. In this study, we present the development of an online citizen science platform, Tracking Nemo, to improve data accuracy on swimming trajectories of zebrafish groups. As an online extension of software for tracking the position of zebrafish from video recordings, Tracking Nemo offers volunteers the opportunity to contribute to science by manually correcting tracked trajectory data from their personal computers...
February 22, 2018: Zebrafish
William D Pearse, Ignacio Morales-Castilla, Logan S James, Maxwell Farrell, Frédéric Boivin, T Jonathan Davies
Studying the macroevolution of the songs of Passeriformes (perching birds) has proved challenging. The complexity of the task stems not just from the macroevolutionary and macroecological challenge of modelling so many species, but also from the difficulty in collecting and quantifying birdsong itself. Using machine learning techniques, we extracted songs from a large citizen science dataset, and then analysed the evolution, and biotic and abiotic predictors of variation in birdsong across 578 passerine species...
February 14, 2018: Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution
Douglas C Tozer, Owen Steele, Mark Gloutney
Wetlands conserved using water level manipulation, cattle exclusion, naturalization of uplands, and other techniques under the North American Waterfowl Management Plan ("conservation project wetlands") are important for ducks, geese, and swans ("waterfowl"). However, the assumption that conservation actions for waterfowl also benefit other wildlife is rarely quantified. We modeled detection and occupancy of species at sites within 42 conservation project wetlands compared to sites within 52 similar nearby unmanaged wetlands throughout southern Ontario, Canada, and small portions of the adjacent U...
February 8, 2018: Journal of Environmental Management
Alison Ritter, Kari Lancaster, Rosalyn Diprose
Policies concerned with illicit drugs vex governments. While the 'evidence-based policy' paradigm argues that governments should be informed by 'what works', in practice policy makers rarely operate this way. Moreover the evidence-based policy paradigm fails to account for democratic participatory processes, particularly how community members and people who use drugs might be included. The aim of this paper is to explore the political science thinking about democratic participation and the potential afforded in 'deliberative democracy' approaches, such as Citizens Juries and other mini-publics for improved drug policy processes...
February 8, 2018: International Journal on Drug Policy
Vincent Bretagnolle, Elsa Berthet, Nicolas Gross, Bertrand Gauffre, Christine Plumejeaud, Sylvie Houte, Isabelle Badenhausser, Karine Monceau, Fabrice Allier, Pascal Monestiez, Sabrina Gaba
Agriculture is currently facing unprecedented challenges: ensuring food, fiber and energy production in the face of global change, maintaining the economic performance of farmers and preserving natural resources such as biodiversity and associated key ecosystem services for sustainable agriculture. Addressing these challenges requires innovative landscape scale farming systems that account for changing economic and environmental targets. These novel agricultural systems need to be recognized, accepted and promoted by all stakeholders, including local residents, and supported by public policies...
February 1, 2018: Science of the Total Environment
Valeria Hidalgo-Ruz, Daniela Honorato-Zimmer, Magdalena Gatta-Rosemary, Paloma Nuñez, Iván A Hinojosa, Martin Thiel
We examined the hypothesis that in an emerging economy such as Chile the abundances of Anthropogenic Marine Debris (AMD) on beaches are increasing over time. The citizen science program Científicos de la Basura ("Litter Scientists") conducted three national surveys (2008, 2012 and 2016) to determine AMD composition, abundance, spatial patterns and temporal trends. AMD was found on all beaches along the entire Chilean coast. Highest percentages of AMD in all surveys were plastics and cigarette butts, which can be attributed to local sources (i...
January 2018: Marine Pollution Bulletin
Louise I Lynch, Jenny M Dauer, Wayne A Babchuk, Tiffany Heng-Moss, Doug Golick
A mixed methods study was used to transcend the traditional pre-, post-test approach of citizen science evaluative research by integrating adults' test scores with their perceptions. We assessed how contributory entomology citizen science affects participants' science self-efficacy, self-efficacy for environmental action, nature relatedness and attitude towards insects. Pre- and post-test score analyses from citizen scientists (n = 28) and a control group (n = 72) were coupled with interviews (n = 11) about science experiences and entomological interactions during participation...
February 6, 2018: Insects
Laura Mählmann, Sebastian Schee Gen Halfmann, Agnes von Wyl, Angela Brand
OBJECTIVE: To assess the willingness of older Swiss adults to share genetic data for research purposes and to investigate factors that might impact their willingness to share data. METHODS: Semi-structured interviews were conducted among 40 participants (19 male and 21 female) aged between 67 and 92 years, between December 2013 and April 2014 attending the Seniorenuniversität Zürich, Switzerland. All interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim, and anonymized...
February 7, 2018: Public Health Genomics
Katrien De Cocker, Sebastien F M Chastin, Ilse De Bourdeaudhuij, Ineke Imbo, Jeroen Stragier, Greet Cardon
There is a lack of research on how to communicate public health guidelines. Citizen science (CS) has been an effective way to involve the public in research. This study analyses the reach of a well-established CS experiment, launched during an annual national science event, to understand if it could be used as communication strategy for public health issues. A short playful online survey contained tailored health-related messages associated to an "animal totem" profile, based on the combination of sitting and physical activity levels (koala: high sitting, low activity; gorilla: high sitting, high activity; zebra: low sitting, low activity; bee: low sitting, high activity)...
February 7, 2018: Health Communication
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