CCS Cooperative Extension

Assessing citizen and community science in UC ANR

Overview

With offices in every county across the State, and programs that engage farmers, natural resource managers, rural and urban communities, and adults and youth, among others, the University of California’s Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR) is in an exciting position to develop innovative and impactful citizen and community science. In some ways, public participation has been at the core of UC ANR’s work from its inception in 1913. UC ANR academics are regularly engaged in co-created research, and there is an opportunity to place this rich history in the context of the evolving field of citizen and community science. At the same time, there is considerable potential for UC ANR to develop new citizen and community science initiatives for the benefit of Californians.

The Center for Community and Citizen Science at UC Davis is partnering with the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources in exploring these opportunities. Our work began with an assessment of citizen and community science across UC ANR programs that developed a robust picture of what is already happening across UC ANR, helps us understand the barriers and opportunities that are shaping that picture. The results show how UC ANR can incorporate citizen and community science into its overall strategy and programming, and inform UC ANR personnel and constituents about CCS activities and opportunities. Read the full report here.

Project Goals

  1. Assess the status of community and citizen science at UC ANR. Highlight UC ANR’s long history of public engagement and better understand the scope and diversity of ways in which communities and individuals participate in UC ANR research.
  2. Highlight opportunities for useful, credible science through CCS. Identify ways in which participatory science can further provide useful, quality-controlled/assured data for UC ANR research, while expanding the geographic and temporal scope of UC ANR research across initiative areas and division level programmatic goals.
  3. Highlight opportunities for public engagement. Identify opportunities to expand and improve UC ANR public engagement by promoting community and citizen science.
  4. Provide roadmap for increasing UC ANR capacity for CCS. Communicate to UC ANR scientists the potential value of CCS approaches in their work, including recommendations for ensuring quality and credibility of CCS data. Provide advice and framework for increasing UC ANR capacity for CCS.
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Final Report: Community and Citizen Science at the UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources

In late 2017, the Center for Community and Citizen Science began an assessment of public participation in research throughout the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources. The final report, “Community and Citizen Science at the UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources” is now available! Authored by our Executive Director Ryan Meyer and California Naturalist Interim Director Sabrina Drill, the report examines the status of community and citizen science at UC ANR and provides a roadmap for increasing UC ANR’s capacity for CCS.

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