The Role of Citizen Science and Volunteer Data Collection in Zoological Research

Other literature type, Article English OPEN
Hart, Adam ; Stafford, Richard ; Goodenough, Anne ; Morgan, Simon (2012)
  • Publisher: Hindawi Publishing Corporation
  • Journal: International Journal of Zoology (issn: 1687-8477)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.1155/2012/105345
  • Subject: QH301 | QH | QL | Article Subject

In many ways, science has never been as popular as it is now. With an ever-increasing number of popular science books on everything from astronomy to climate change and evolution and entire TV channels devoted to science output, the public seems spoilt for choice. However, paradoxically, there is also an increasing disconnect between science—and scientists—and society, and this is certainly evident in the life sciences. This disconnect comes in two forms: interest and level of knowledge. Indeed, one has only to look at the 2012 US presidential election campaign to see the lack of scientific knowledge possessed by many of the political elite about topics such as climate change. If high profile scientific topics are still so widely misunderstood by those in the public eye, it is unsurprising that there is such a lack of understanding of, and interest in, scientific topics in the general public. It should, in theory, be the easiest to address this discontent in subjects like zoology, where the evidence is all around us and can be easily seen, appreciated, and studied by the world’s citizens.
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