The Whitehouse recently released a “Federal Crowdsourcing and Citizen Science Toolkit,” which helps agencies through the process of collecting information from the public via crowdsourcing.
‘Citizen science’ involves voluntary public participation in the scientific process – to form research questions, conduct scientific experiments, collect and analyze data, interpret results, make discoveries, develop technologies and applications, and solve complex real-world problems.
‘Crowdsourcing’ involves an open call for volunteers to provide information or help solve a particular problem.
The Environmental Protection Agency is hoping to use a crowdsourcing project to contribute data on topics such as air pollution.
One of EPA’s existing projects uses monitoring devices that can give more detailed, localized information on air quality.