CosmoQuest has a large presence at this year’s AGU in Washington, DC, from Dec 10-14, 2018. We have a number of posters and presentations by our team members. If you’re there, come by and check out what we’ve been doing!
Maya Bakerman will be presenting the poster ED51F-0707: Citizen Science Motivations
When: Friday, 14 December 2018 08:00 – 12:20
Where: Walter E Washington Convention Center – Hall A-C (Poster Hall)
Description: The increase in access to online science data has resulted in the need to develop efficient analysis opportunities for non-subject matter experts to assist with data collecting and analysis. Citizen science has been deemed a captivating way to engage the public in science and promote further scientific research. During six months in 2014, 30 participants from the CosmoQuest citizen science project were interviewed to assess their motivations for being involved in the citizen science projects as well as their experiences with citizen science. Participants were selected using the CosmoQuest database based on each individual’s duration in a project as well as the number of projects in which they participated. We report on participants’ interview responses related to their motivations, length and frequency of engagement, and reasons for leaving online projects. In particular, we examined if and how motivations may have changed for those who had engaged in the projects in order to develop support for, and to help understand, participants of citizen science. This data was analyzed in 2017 using the framework of Crowston and Fagnot’s (2008) intrinsic-extrinsic motivational arc which looked at curiosity-driven, cost-benefit, and contribution level. A majority of the individuals interviewed mentioned the reason for their participating was related to interest in the topic, helping, learning, or teaching. Of those participants who no longer took part in citizen science projects, a few indicated their being frustrated with the site, receiving negative feedback, and feeling unsupported. Our work is helping us to understand participants who engage in online citizen science projects so that researchers can better design projects to meet their needs and develop support materials and incentives to encourage more participation.