Citizens in the woodwork

If you go down to the woods today, will the data collected give you a big surprise?

The ultimate act of environmental collaboration might involve getting the general public to go out and collect environmental data that feeds into our efforts at sustainable environmental management. Actually, there’s a name for this type of activity – citizen science. It’s an attractive idea on so many levels. Besides engaging more people in issues of environment and sustainability, it also potentially enables the collection of large quantities of data over vast areas; data that might be too expensive to collect any other way. But how good are those data? That’s a question that has often dogged efforts at citizen science in the past. Recently, I was involved in an investigation that had bank workers out in the woods measuring trees as an exercise in citizen science. And the data they collected weren’t half bad…





Leave a Reply