For a practice that has been around in some form for over a century, citizen science has a seeming newness those familiar with its history might not expect. Speculation on why citizen science has gained significant traction in the last few decades—even gaining its familiar banner of “citizen science”—often points to the emergence of online tools for data collection and sharing, and there are websites such as SciStarter that work to coordinate projects and volunteers, and scientists are increasingly turning to the practice insofar as numerous conferences dedicated to citizen science have been held. Despite the threads that lead back a century, the situations to which citizen science projects and citizen scientists respond have notably distinct characteristics from their antecedent forms, and so the current swell of interest in the enterprise is not all together unexpected. Indeed, there is much...
Tales of Tiger Beetles and Other Citizen Sciences
Danielle B. Griffin is a BA student in the Honors English program at the University of Waterloo, who is studying the literature and rhetoric plan with a digital media specialization and cognitive science minor. Her current research interests include interdisciplinary approaches to cognition and language, with an emphasis on computational methods.
Lillian A. Black is a master’s student in English—rhetoric and communication design at the University of Waterloo. Their research interests include the cognitive and semiotic aspects of rhetoric—particularly rhetorical figures—the implementation and pedagogical implications of multidisciplinary postsecondary education, and the manifestation of expertise and credibility across genres of scientific discourse, with an emphasis on print and digital mediums.
Patricia Balbon is a BS student in the Honors Science program at the University of Waterloo taking the society, technology, and values option with a biology minor. She was the 2016 Policy and Practices Lead for Waterloo’s team in the International Genetically Engineered Machine Competition. Her current research is in the policy network of gain-of-function research regulation.
Ashley Rose Mehlenbacher is an assistant professor in the Department of English Language and Literature at the University of Waterloo, author of Science Communication Online: Engaging Experts and Publics on the Internet (forthcoming), and coeditor of Emerging Genres in New Media Environments (as Ashley R. Kelly, 2017).
Danielle B. Griffin, Lillian A. Black, Patricia Balbon, Ashley Rose Mehlenbacher; Tales of Tiger Beetles and Other Citizen Sciences. East Asian Science, Technology and Society 1 June 2019; 13 (2): 323–330. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/18752160-7543073
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