Workshop Support: Enhancing Biodiversity Conservation and Environmental Stewardship through Public Participation in Scientific Research (PPSR)

September 1st, 2010 - August 31st, 2013 | PROJECT

The American Museum of Natural History, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, and the National Audubon Society are partnering to organize a workshop for scientists, educators, and community members involved in conservation-oriented Public Participation in Scientific Research (PPSR) projects. PPSR projects have the potential to advance scientific discovery by engaging volunteers in large-scale data collection and analysis, enabling volunteers to conduct scientific inquiry, and promoting stakeholder involvement in policymaking. Despite PPSR's potential, educators need to understand what mechanisms best nurture the development of skills, attitudes, and behaviors of citizen scientist volunteers. Workshop participants will share experiences, lessons learned, protocols and tools, and develop an agenda for answering still unanswered questions about advancing informal science education goals via PPSR activities. Topics for workshop sessions include models of PPSR projects; PPSR data for conservation biology; conservation psychology; integrating PPSR into conservation planning; and emerging technologies for public participation in PPSR projects. The goals of the project are to (1) enhance the practice of biodiversity science, (2) increase the potential for biodiversity conservation projects to meet educational goals, (3) allow scientists to further engage in and contribute to answering large-scale research questions, and (4) prepare the groundwork for establishing more public participation projects as part of museum public programs. The project's objectives are to identify conditions under which PPSR projects can be most useful for biodiversity conservation, explore the impact of PPSR in encouraging volunteers to become interested in and stewards of nature, identify strategies and mechanisms for expanding the reach of PPSR to new audiences, and create a network for PPSR organizers.

Project Website(s)

(no project website provided)

Team Members

Eleanor Sterling, Principal Investigator, American Museum Natural History
Robert Petty, Co-Principal Investigator, National Audubon Society
Rick Bonney, Co-Principal Investigator, Cornell University
Felicity Arengo, Co-Principal Investigator, American Museum of Natural History
Judy Braus, Former Co-Principal Investigator, National Audubon Society


Funding Source: NSF
Funding Program: ISE/AISL
Award Number: 1020909
Funding Amount: 278256


Audience: Educators | Teachers | Museum | ISE Professionals | Scientists
Discipline: Ecology | forestry | agriculture | History | policy | law | Life science
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Citizen Science Programs | Museum and Science Center Programs | Professional Development | Conferences | Networks | Professional Development and Workshops | Public Programs