How to get out of (extreme) citizen scientists way

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Information about How to get out of (extreme) citizen scientists way
Technology

Published on February 25, 2014

Author: ucl_ExCiteS

Source: slideshare.net

Description

The digital information age promises a shift in the definition of who can do science and what science is for. The power balance in the production of scientific knowledge is shifting, initiated by DIY scientists, tryers, as well as professional scientists engaging in ever more participatory public research aided by digital technologies. However, defined and driven by prevailing institutionalised patterns of power and authority, the professionalisation of knowledge remains problematic undermining ordinary people’s hopes, passions and capacity to contribute. There is evidence that it is through the bottom-up envisioning and devising of methods and through the creation, re-purposing, and use of technologies, that some people are taking a lead applying their civic capacities into scientific research initiatives that challenge and/or question the state of things to address issues of concern to them. Conceptualised as Publicly Initiated Scientific Research (PIScR) it is these efforts that provide the granularity and nuance that renders them inclusive of local issues, knowledges, politics, and solutions. Understanding PIScR within citizen science and Participatory Action Research reveals the extent to which technologies enable the leveraging of production of knowledge between professional/institutional science and civil society as well as key concerns on the democratising potential of science.

publicly initiated scientific research @UCL_ExCiteS | @CwB_london

how to get out of (extreme) citizen scientists’ way Cindy Regalado UCL Extreme Citizen Science Research Group Dept. Civil, Geomatic & Environmental Engineering

• Problem-solving based primarily on institutionalised and professionalised science practices: ‘objective’ models, controlled experiments, reduced uncertainty • hinders understanding of the complex multiscale web of emerging problems & the conception of new methods for their solution • undermines creativity, skills, competence, and aspirations of a large portion of the population the problem

Type 5 ‘Beyond’ • PIScR Tryers & doers – do it yourself, discover it yourself, design it yourself Type 4 ‘Extreme’ • Collaborative Science – problem definition, data collection and analysis Type 3 ‘Participatory science’ Type 2 ‘Distributed Intelligence’ Type 1 ‘Crowdsourcing’ • Participation in problem definition and data collection • Citizens as basic interpreters • Citizens as sensors types of engagement in citizen science

Type 5 ‘Beyond’ • PIScR Tryers & doers – do it yourself, discover it yourself, design it yourself Type 4 ‘Extreme’ • Collaborative Science – problem definition, data collection and analysis Type 3 ‘Participatory science’ Type 2 ‘Distributed Intelligence’ Type 1 ‘Crowdsourcing’ • Participation in problem definition and data collection • Citizens as basic interpreters • Citizens as sensors publicly initiated scientific research (PIScR)

Kite Publicly Initiated Scientific Research is… Community oriented & developed Community owned camer a Tools can be adapted & spread in an open source fashion Civic Science based on practice by Public Laboratory for Open Technology & Science publiclab.org

In Publicly Initiated Scientific Research… Locals regarded as experts of their own environments Stems from public exploration & investigation of environments DIY spectrometry

the power of grassroots & DIY

• range from pollicised responses to satisfaction of having a job well done • referred to as amateurs, hobbyists, hackers… • essence of DIY is one of self-: self-reliance, selflearning, self satisfaction • taking ownership, figuring things out by ourselves • yes, of course, it is frustrating at times the essence of DIY

“grassroots bottom-up efforts provide granularity and nuance that renders them inclusive of local issues, knowledges, po litics, and sustainable solutions” Gowanus canal initiative

• how do we support grassroots initiative, DIY efforts? • more science education? …patronising • increased transparency? …anxiety • a shift in focus from “a lack of scientific literacy as a problem to a recognition of a range of different knowledges that people have and use as they confront science and technology in their everyday lives” Cunningham-Burley (2006) the challenge

“there are no process at the institutional level for the recognition and integration of multiple claims to knowledge and institutional arrangements cannot yet conceive a process for the validation of bottom-up knowledge claims because powerful interests subvert the process” – Yvonne Rydin (2007) the complication

• apathy is public engagement is a MYTH • what needs urgent attention is an acknowledgement of – our anxieties (“what is going on?”), – our ambivalence (competing desires and drives), and – our aspirations (I want to do something about it) • coupled with approaches that “meet people where they are at, not where we want them to be” Renee Lertzman (2012) • So let's acknowledge plurality and let's really listen the myth of apathy

ENGAGEMENT …let’s focus on FACILITATORS in our ability to question TRUST in our ability to do …let’s focus on ENABLERS that what we do matters COMMUNITY …let’s focus on OUR ROLE the proposal

DIY manifesto • • • • DIY = empowerment & sense of ownership DIY = independence DIY = creativity DIY = understanding of things and taking charge • DIY = the right to choose • DIY transforms consumers into contributors • DIY is saves you money!

…in Extreme Citizen Science we commit to principles of “…it is a kind of participation and science that questions inclusion, openness and the state of things” acknowledgement, collaboration and creativity we encourage a science that reduces barriers, increases democratic participation, recognises the importance of each participant and allows all voices to be heard Extreme Citizen Science is science by citizens, where anyone, regardless of their background, can take ownership over and investigate issues that are of concern to them to bring about meaningful change contact: cindy.regalado.11@ucl.ac.uk website: www.ucl.ac.uk/excites

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