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Citizen science

Ambika Mathur, Annmarie Cano, Michael Kohl, Nisansala S Muthunayake, Prassanna Vaidyanathan, Mary E Wood, Mustafa Ziyad
It has long been thought that biomedical doctoral students pursue careers primarily as tenure-track/tenured faculty at research institutions. Recent reports showed, however, that the majority of biomedical doctoral alumni engage in a variety of careers. Wayne State University (WSU) undertook a project to understand the career trajectories of its biomedical doctoral alumni to create programs to better prepare its students for careers in multiple pathways. Data were collected on career outcomes of WSU's biomedical doctoral alumni who graduated in a 15-year period from 1999-2014...
2018: PloS One
Milo A Puhan, Nina Steinemann, Christian P Kamm, Stephanie Müller, Jens Kuhle, Roland Kurmann, Pasquale Calabrese, Jürg Kesselring, Viktor von Wyl, Swiss Multiple Sclerosis Registry Smsr
QUESTION UNDER STUDY: Our aim was to assess whether a novel approach of digitally facilitated, citizen-science research, as followed by the Swiss Multiple Sclerosis Registry (Swiss MS Registry), leads to accelerated participant recruitment and more diverse study populations compared with traditional research studies where participants are mostly recruited in study centres without the use of digital technology. METHODS: The Swiss MS Registry is a prospective, longitudinal, observational study covering all Switzerland...
May 16, 2018: Swiss Medical Weekly
Mathieu Bazin, Craig R Williams
Mosquito-borne diseases are a pervasive public health problem on a global scale, and effective management of them requires well-designed surveillance programs for both vectors and pathogens. Mosquito traps are a common component of such programs, and their reach can be expanded by engaging citizen scientists. In this study in a southern Australian city, we compared the mosquito collection efficacy of two types of traps and assessed their suitability for use in citizen science programs. BG Sentinels and BG Gravid Aedes Trap (BG-GAT) traps both collected Aedes and Culex species in similar proportions, albeit with the former collecting approximately nine times as many mosquitoes...
June 2018: Journal of Vector Ecology: Journal of the Society for Vector Ecology
Timothy M Barzyk, Hongtai Huang, Ronald Williams, Amanda Kaufman, Jonathan Essoka
Citizen science provides quantitative results to support environmental health assessments (EHAs), but standardized approaches do not currently exist to translate findings into actionable solutions. The emergence of low-cost portable sensor technologies and proliferation of publicly available datasets provides unparalleled access to supporting evidence; yet data collection, analysis, interpretation, visualization, and communication are subjective approaches that must be tailored to a decision-making audience capable of improving environmental health...
May 11, 2018: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Kassi L Kosnicki, Jerrold C Penprase, Patricia Cintora, Pedro J Torres, Greg L Harris, Susan M Brasser, Scott T Kelley
Many alcohol-induced health complications are directly attributable to the toxicity of alcohol or its metabolites, but another potential health impact of alcohol may be on the microbial communities of the human gut. Clear distinctions between healthy and diseased-state gut microbiota have been observed in subjects with metabolic diseases, and recent studies suggest that chronic alcoholism is linked to gut microbiome dysbiosis. Here, we investigated the effects of moderate levels of alcohol consumption on the gut microbiome in both rats and humans...
May 11, 2018: Addiction Biology
Natalia S Klimenko, Alexander V Tyakht, Anna S Popenko, Anatoly S Vasiliev, Ilya A Altukhov, Dmitry S Ischenko, Tatiana I Shashkova, Daria A Efimova, Dmitri A Nikogosov, Dmitrii A Osipenko, Sergey V Musienko, Kseniya S Selezneva, Ancha Baranova, Alexander M Kurilshikov, Stepan M Toshchakov, Aleksei A Korzhenkov, Nazar I Samarov, Margarita A Shevchenko, Alina V Tepliuk, Dmitry G Alexeev
Personalized nutrition is of increasing interest to individuals actively monitoring their health. The relations between the duration of diet intervention and the effects on gut microbiota have yet to be elucidated. Here we examined the associations of short-term dietary changes, long-term dietary habits and lifestyle with gut microbiota. Stool samples from 248 citizen-science volunteers were collected before and after a self-reported 2-week personalized diet intervention, then analyzed using 16S rRNA sequencing...
May 8, 2018: Nutrients
Qijun Jiang, Arnold K Bregt, Lammert Kooistra
Environmental sensing data provide crucial information for environment-related decision-making. Formal data are provided by official environmental institutes. Beyond those, however, there is a growing body of so-called informal sensing data, which are contributed by citizens using low-cost sensors. How good are these informal data, and how might they be applied, next to formal environmental sensing data? Could both types of sensing data be gainfully integrated? This paper presents the results of an online survey investigating perceptions within citizen science communities, environmental institutes and their networks of formal and informal environmental sensing data...
April 1, 2018: Science of the Total Environment
Richard E Feldman, Irma Žemaitė, Abraham J Miller-Rushing
Monitoring plant and animal phenology is a critical step to anticipating and predicting changes in species interactions and biodiversity. Because phenology necessarily involves frequent and repeated observations over time, citizen scientists have become a vital part of collecting phenological data. However, there is still concern over the accuracy and precision of citizen science data. It is possible that training citizen scientists can improve data quality though there are few comparisons of trained and untrained citizen scientists in the ability of each to accurately and precisely measure phenology...
May 7, 2018: International Journal of Biometeorology
David J Cantrill
Premise of the Study: Globally, natural history collections are focused on digitizing specimens and information and making these data accessible. Usage information on National Herbarium of Victoria data made available through the Atlas of Living Australia and The Australasian Virtual Herbarium (AVH) is analyzed to understand how and by whom herbarium data are being used. Methods: Since 2010, AVH data usage information has been gathered from users and supplied to data custodians as a spreadsheet that includes number of download events, number of records downloaded, and user reasons for downloading data in predefined categories...
February 2018: Applications in Plant Sciences
Matt von Konrat, Thomas Campbell, Ben Carter, Matthew Greif, Mike Bryson, Juan Larraín, Laura Trouille, Steve Cohen, Eve Gaus, Ayesha Qazi, Eric Ribbens, Tatyana Livshultz, Taylor J Walker, Tomomi Suwa, Taylor Peterson, Yarency Rodriguez, Caitlin Vaughn, Christina Yang, Selma Aburahmeh, Brian Carstensen, Peter de Lange, Charlie Delavoi, Kalman Strauss, Justyna Drag, Blanka Aguero, Chris Snyder, Joann Martinec, Arfon Smith
Premise of the Study: Biological collections are uniquely poised to inform the stewardship of life on Earth in a time of cataclysmic biodiversity loss. Efforts to fully leverage collections are impeded by a lack of trained taxonomists and a lack of interest and engagement by the public. We provide a model of a crowd-sourced data collection project that produces quality taxonomic data sets and empowers citizen scientists through real contributions to science. Entitled MicroPlants, the project is a collaboration between taxonomists, citizen science experts, and teachers and students from universities and K-12...
February 2018: Applications in Plant Sciences
B Weeser, J Stenfert Kroese, S R Jacobs, N Njue, Z Kemboi, A Ran, M C Rufino, L Breuer
Although water is involved in many ecosystem services, the absence of monitoring data restricts the development of effective water management strategies especially in remote regions. Traditional monitoring networks can be expensive, with unaffordable costs in many low-income countries. Involving citizens in monitoring through crowdsourcing has the potential to reduce these costs but remains uncommon in hydrology. This study evaluates the quality and quantity of data generated by citizens in a remote Kenyan basin and assesses whether crowdsourcing is a suitable method to overcome data scarcity...
August 1, 2018: Science of the Total Environment
Pablo Rey-Mazón, Hagit Keysar, Shannon Dosemagen, Catherine D'Ignazio, Don Blair
This paper explores three cases of Do-It-Yourself, open-source technologies developed within the diverse array of topics and themes in the communities around the Public Laboratory for Open Technology and Science (Public Lab). These cases focus on aerial mapping, water quality monitoring and civic science practices. The techniques discussed have in common the use of accessible, community-built technologies for acquiring data. They are also concerned with embedding collaborative and open source principles into the objects, tools, social formations and data sharing practices that emerge from these inquiries...
May 3, 2018: Science and Engineering Ethics
Alex Baumber, Graciela Metternicht, Peter Ampt, Rebecca Cross, Emily Berry
Cross-property cooperation has the potential to enhance the effectiveness of environmental management actions that cut across property boundaries. Online tools can facilitate this and overcome barriers to landholder engagement in collaborative management. However, collaborative online tools need to be designed and tailored to users' needs and values, and landholder participation in the development process is critical to ensuring uptake and long-term use. This article presents a case study from the Central Tablelands region of New South Wales, Australia, where landholders have been involved in participatory development of a new online collaboration tool...
April 30, 2018: Journal of Environmental Management
Jean-Baptiste Gouyon
Between 1962 and 2004, Nobel Prize laureates appear in the British television science programme Horizon in various roles, denoting differing understandings of science in relation to society and culture. These representations are the outcome of an interplay of cultural and institutional factors. They vary with the broadcasting environment. Notably, the article establishes that the choice of presenting scientists as heroic characters in strongly determined storylines from the late-1990s onwards originates in a reaction to institutional imperatives as a means to preserve the existence of the Horizon series...
May 2018: Public Understanding of Science
Chaozi Wang, Rebecca L Schneider, Jean-Yves Parlange, Helen E Dahlke, M Todd Walter
Escherichia coli (E. coli) level in streams is a public health indicator. Therefore, being able to explain why E. coli levels are sometimes high and sometimes low is important. Using citizen science data from Fall Creek in central NY we found that complementarily using principal component analysis (PCA) and partial least squares (PLS) regression provided insights into the drivers of E. coli and a mechanism for predicting E. coli levels, respectively. We found that stormwater, temperature/season and shallow subsurface flow are the three dominant processes driving the fate and transport of E...
April 24, 2018: Science of the Total Environment
A Jensen, L O Bonde
AIMS: This literature review aims to illustrate the variety and multitude of studies showing that participation in arts activities and clinical arts interventions can be beneficial for citizens with mental and physical health problems. The article is focused on mental health benefits because this is an emerging field in the Nordic countries where evidence is demanded from national health agencies that face an increasing number of citizens with poor mental health and a need for non-medical interventions and programmes...
April 1, 2018: Perspectives in Public Health
Petra Maresova, Signe Tomsone, Petre Lameski, Joana Madureira, Ana Mendes, Eftim Zdravevski, Ivan Chorbev, Vladimir Trajkovik, Moriah Ellen, Kasper Rodile
In the nineties, numerous studies began to highlight the problem of the increasing number of people with Alzheimer's disease in developed countries, especially in the context of demographic progress. At the same time, the 21st century is typical of the development of advanced technologies that penetrate all areas of human life. Digital devices, sensors, and intelligent applications are tools that can help seniors and allow better communication and control of their caregivers. The aim of the paper is to provide an up-to-date summary of the use of technological solutions for improving health and safety for people with Alzheimer's disease...
April 27, 2018: Current Alzheimer Research
Peter J Irga, Katherine Barker, Fraser R Torpy
Fungi are undoubtedly important for ecosystem functioning, however they are relatively poorly considered in biodiversity conservation planning. Fungi have been omitted or given scant attention in most biodiversity policy documents, management plans and formal conservation schedules throughout the world. This oversight may be due to a general lack of awareness in the scientific community, compounded by a scarcity of mycology-associated curricula at the tertiary level, along with a lack of mycologists in research institutions...
April 23, 2018: Conservation Biology: the Journal of the Society for Conservation Biology
Dan Chen, Qi Zhang, Jing Deng, Yan Cai, Jufang Huang, Fang Li, Kun Xiong
Both in mainland China and around the world, regional anatomy stands as one of the most important basic science courses in medical school curricula. As such, dissection of human cadavers and use of prosected specimens remains the most essential teaching method in anatomy education. However, medical educators have raised increasing concerns about an ongoing shortage of cadavers for medical use in mainland China, a problem which may seriously limit the future development of human anatomy education. Based on a survey on cadaver usage in anatomy education in mainland China, this study found that the cadaver resources of most given medical schools in mainland China are associated with their geographic location, academic ranking, and local support for body donation policies...
April 12, 2018: Anatomical Sciences Education
Rosie Brigham, Josep Grau-Bove, Anna Rudnicka, May Cassar, Matija Strlic
This research assesses the precision, repeatability and accuracy of crowd-sourced scientific measurements, and whether their quality is sufficient to provide usable results. Measurements of colour and area were chosen because of the possibility of producing them with smartphone cameras. The quality of measurements was estimated experimentally by comparing data contributed by anonymous participants in heritage sites with reference measurements of known accuracy and precision. Participants performed the measurements by taking photographs with their smartphones, from which colour and dimensional data could be extracted...
April 12, 2018: Angewandte Chemie
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