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Friday, May 19 • 11:30am - 12:30pm
D-08: Symposium: Evidence-based principles to guide project owners in the co-management of project participants within the SciStarter ecosystem

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Evidence-based Principles to Guide Project Owners in the Co-management of Project Participants Within the SciStarter Ecosystem
Organizer: Caren Cooper
Citizen Science projects do not exist in isolation, but among a rapidly growing number of project offerings. Recruiting and retaining participants, as well as undertaking scholarly studies of participation, in single projects overlooks synergies that might occur as individuals engage with multiple projects. SciStarter is the largest repository of citizen science projects in the world. Within SciStarter, information about more than 1,500 citizen science projects and characteristics of their participation, design, outcomes, and impacts are compiled and curated. Through syndicated outreach, SciStarter has recruited 50,000+ people to join its community of citizen scientists. Thanks to a NSF-AISL Pathways award, SciStarter 2.0 tools offer each member a dashboard to manage and display their citizen science activities, track their progress in projects, network with others, and consent to have their online behavior tracked across citizen science projects. SciStarter 2.0 tools help project owners to promote their projects and recruit participants from specific locations or with certain skills, as well as learn about their participants' associations with other projects. Since 2010, SciStarter has directed people towards the projects most suitable to their interests, abilities, and location. Owners of those projects, however, rarely reciprocate, that is, they generally do not encourage their volunteers to join other projects or the SciStarter community. This symposium provides initial evidence, from quantitative and qualitative research, of the benefits of clustering projects online and fostering participation in multiple projects, and offers guidance to project owners for managing volunteers within a diverse ecosystem of projects with new SciStarter 2.0 tools.


Designing Participation Experiences to Engage and Retain Long-Term Volunteers
Snigdha Petluru*, University of Maryland-College Park; Andrea Wiggins

Divers vs dabblers: stronger science and conservation outcome when volunteers participate in multiple, varied projects
Caren Cooper*, Associate Professor, North Carolina State University and SciStarter; Lincoln Larson

Presentation matters: how teachers assess citizen science projects for classrooms
Jonathan Brier*, University of Maryland-College Park; Andrea Wiggins

SciStarter 2.0 Tools: A Digital Platform to Foster and Study Sustained Engagement in Citizen Science
Catherine Hoffman*, SciStarter;
Co-Authors: Darlene Cavalier, Caren Cooper

Using Marketing Strategies to Examine Volunteer Recruitment and Retention in Online Citizen Science Projects
Alycia Crall, SciStarter

Friday May 19, 2017 11:30am - 12:30pm CDT
Meeting Rooms 10, 11 & 12