Rise of the Citizen Scientist. Nature 524(7565):265.
Rise of the Citizen Scientist [link]Paper  doi  abstract   bibtex   
From the oceans to the soil, technology is changing the part that amateurs can play in research. But this greater involvement raises concerns that must be addressed. [Excerpt] [...] Citizen science has come a long way from the first distributed-computing projects that hoovered up spare processing power on home computers to perform calculations or search for alien signals. And it has progressed further still since the earliest public surveys of wildlife: it was way back in 1900 that the Audubon Society persuaded Americans to exchange their Christmas tradition of shooting birds for a more productive effort to count them instead. [] Some professional scientists are sniffy about the role of amateurs, but as an increasing number of academic papers makes clear, the results can be valuable and can help both to generate data and to inform policy. [...] [] Technology can make scientists of us all. Data churned out by the rapid spread of consumer gadgets equipped with satellite navigation, cameras and a suite of other sensors, and the ease of sharing the results digitally, are driving the boom in citizen science. Volunteers can already identify whale songs from recordings, report litter and invasive species, and send in the skeletons of fish they have caught and consumed. But there is more to being a scientist, of course, than collecting and sharing data – especially if the results are to be used to help determine policy. [] Critics have raised concerns about data quality, and some studies do find that volunteers are less able to identify plant species than are academics and land managers. And there are issues around how to reward and recognize the contribution of volunteers, and around ensuring that data are shared or kept confidential as appropriate. But these problems seem relatively simple to address – not least because they reflect points – from authorship to data quality and access – that the professional scientific community is already wrestling with. [] More troubling, perhaps, is the potential for conflicts of interest. One reason that some citizen scientists volunteer is to advance their political objectives. [...] Scientists and funders are right to encourage the shift from passive citizen science – number crunching – to more-active roles, including sample collection. But as increased scrutiny falls on the reliability of the work of professional scientists, full transparency about the motives and ambitions of amateurs is essential.
@article{natureRiseCitizenScientist2015,
  title = {Rise of the Citizen Scientist},
  author = {{Nature}},
  date = {2015-08},
  journaltitle = {Nature},
  volume = {524},
  pages = {265},
  issn = {0028-0836},
  doi = {10.1038/524265a},
  url = {https://doi.org/10.1038/524265a},
  abstract = {From the oceans to the soil, technology is changing the part that amateurs can play in research. But this greater involvement raises concerns that must be addressed.

[Excerpt] [...] Citizen science has come a long way from the first distributed-computing projects that hoovered up spare processing power on home computers to perform calculations or search for alien signals. And it has progressed further still since the earliest public surveys of wildlife: it was way back in 1900 that the Audubon Society persuaded Americans to exchange their Christmas tradition of shooting birds for a more productive effort to count them instead.

[] Some professional scientists are sniffy about the role of amateurs, but as an increasing number of academic papers makes clear, the results can be valuable and can help both to generate data and to inform policy. [...]

[] Technology can make scientists of us all. Data churned out by the rapid spread of consumer gadgets equipped with satellite navigation, cameras and a suite of other sensors, and the ease of sharing the results digitally, are driving the boom in citizen science. Volunteers can already identify whale songs from recordings, report litter and invasive species, and send in the skeletons of fish they have caught and consumed. But there is more to being a scientist, of course, than collecting and sharing data -- especially if the results are to be used to help determine policy.

[] Critics have raised concerns about data quality, and some studies do find that volunteers are less able to identify plant species than are academics and land managers. And there are issues around how to reward and recognize the contribution of volunteers, and around ensuring that data are shared or kept confidential as appropriate. But these problems seem relatively simple to address -- not least because they reflect points -- from authorship to data quality and access -- that the professional scientific community is already wrestling with.

[] More troubling, perhaps, is the potential for conflicts of interest. One reason that some citizen scientists volunteer is to advance their political objectives. [...] Scientists and funders are right to encourage the shift from passive citizen science -- number crunching -- to more-active roles, including sample collection. But as increased scrutiny falls on the reliability of the work of professional scientists, full transparency about the motives and ambitions of amateurs is essential.},
  keywords = {*imported-from-citeulike-INRMM,~INRMM-MiD:c-13706673,~to-add-doi-URL,citizen-science,citizen-sensor,data-collection-bias,data-uncertainty,integration-techniques,science-ethics,uncertainty},
  number = {7565}
}
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