Giving Compass' Take:

• Anyone can participate in citizen science, and participants can contribute to high-quality learning experiences and the advancement of scientific research. 

• Citizen science can help breach gaps in research, contribute to data reporting, and can inform public on science policy issues. How can donors promote and spread awareness about the power of citizen science? 

• Here is the science to watch in 2019 that may change the world. 

Science is our most reliable system of gaining new knowledge and citizen science is the public involvement in inquiry and discovery of new scientific knowledge. A citizen science project can involve one person or millions of people collaborating towards a common goal. Typically, public involvement is in data collection, analysis, or reporting.

Here are four common features of citizen science practice: (a) anyone can participate, (b) participants use the same protocol so data can be combined and be high quality, (c) data can help real scientists come to real conclusions, and (d) a wide community of scientists and volunteers work together and share data to which the public, as well as scientists, have access.

What is a citizen scientist?

A citizen scientist is an individual who voluntarily contributes his or her time, effort, and resources toward scientific research in collaboration with professional scientists or alone. These individuals don’t necessarily have a formal science background.

How can I get involved?

SciStarter provides a database of more than 1500 vetted, searchable projects and events.

Today’s opportunities to participate in citizen science are boundless. Odds are there is a citizen science project that coincides with any hobby, interest, or curiosity that you may have.

These emergent, accessible platforms make it possible to help the USGS measure and record earthquake tremors; join NASA's effort in counting passing meteors, and even help monitor noise and light pollution in our communities.  Platforms like Project NOAH, SciSpy and iNaturalist provide free mobile apps for participants to share photos and observations of wildlife and nature in their backyards, cities, and towns.

The idea behind these projects is that anyone, anywhere can participate in meaningful scientific research.

Read the full article about citizen science at Scistarter.