CCS Climate Change and CCS

Climate Change and Community and Citizen Science


How can citizen and community science inform and support the National Climate Assessment?

The National Climate Assessment is a significant periodic federal effort to summarize the state of knowledge regarding climate change, impacts, and adaptation in the United States. The Independent Assessment Committee (IAC) on the National Climate Assessment has been brought together to advise the government, after the Trump Administration disbanded the Federal Advisory Committee that normally fulfills this role. As part of its work, the IAC is exploring the current and potential role of citizen and community science in a sustained national climate assessment effort.

  • In December, 2018, Executive Director Ryan Meyer presented this work at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union.
  • At CitSci 2019, Executive Director Ryan Meyer presented “How can citizen and community science support the goals of a sustained National Climate Assessment?” View the poster here to learn more.
  • The IAC recently released a new report, “Evaluating Knowledge to Support Climate Action,” with contributions from our Executive Director Ryan Meyer. Learn more here.

Creating a network of Climate Stewards in California

Our partners at the California Naturalist Program, within the UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, have embarked on an ambitious new effort to train climate stewards throughout California. Modeled after the highly successful California Naturalist Program, the Climate Stewards will include a citizen science component in its curriculum, and we are excited to be supporting the development of this initiative. Read more about the Climate Stewards Initiative here.

Investigating the intersection of climate change, education, and citizen and community science

This project, led by undergraduate intern Sara Ludwick, culminated in an award-winning poster presentation at the 2018 fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union. Click here to enlarge Sara’s poster, and read more about her experience at the conference here.


New Report: Evaluating Knowledge to Support Climate Action

Governments and communities around the world are working to reduce their carbon footprints and mitigate the effects of climate change, but in some communities, climate action plans are stalling. A new report, “Evaluating Knowledge to Support Climate Action,” prepared by the Independent Advisory Committee for Applied Climate Assessment (IAC) with contributions from our Executive Director, Ryan Meyer, examines what it would take to develop a dynamic assessment process that helps affected jurisdictions, communities, and organizations establish pathways for climate action. Its recommendations are an important input to ongoing climate assessment and research in the federal government and elsewhere.

A role for community and citizen science

Bringing communities to the table and making sure they have the resources they need to adapt to new climate conditions is important, and community and citizen science play a critical role. This report hits upon the urgent need and exciting potential for diverse communities to participate actively in the science that supports climate adaptation and resilience. Participation through community and citizen science can address longstanding issues of equity and access that have for so long made science feel distant and irrelevant to many, even as the impacts of climate change loom larger and larger. Additionally, citizen and community science has the potential to close gaps in data-poor areas, shedding light on previously undocumented socioeconomic, ecological and health-related issues.


Sara Ludwick Presents Award-winning Poster at AGU

Congratulations to Sara Ludwick, whose poster at the AGU fall meeting entitled “Achieving Education Goals with Climate-related Community and Citizen Science,” received an Outstanding Student Presentation Award! Read on for Sara’s reflections on the experience.

I practiced my poster presentation with my family the night before my flight to Washington, D.C. The poster explored features of community and citizen science (CCS) projects that had a climate change focus. We were interested in showing how, within the context of climate change, CCS has the potential to not only generate usable data for climate science, but also to provide meaningful learning experiences for participants, depending on how these projects are designed and implemented. I thought it would be a good idea to practice talking about this work with people who had no idea what citizen science is, but their puzzled looks made me feel even more nervous about going to AGU. I spent that night fighting anxious thoughts and battling the infamous “Imposter Syndrome.”

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