Biodiversity Citizen Science Data Production Through iNaturalist: An Anthropological Exploration
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iNaturalist is a common mobile application used in biodiversity citizen science projects and education. The application lets laypeople of all levels of expertise submit species ‘observations’ that can include correlating photo and audio data. All iNaturalist observations are publicly available and can be utilized by professionals in environmental organizations, researchers, academics, and park rangers. By drawing on participant observation at citizen science events hosted by the environmental charity EcoSpark, interviews with academics as well as professionals working for federal and provincial government institutions, it appears that the movement of data from the laypeople to the researchers and professionals can involve acts of giving and taking as well as an abundance of activities that spurn hope and trust for biodiversity citizen science involvement. As explicit anthropological engagement with biodiversity citizen science remains an area for ripe exploration, this thesis thus aims to embark on an anthropological exploration of a sample of iNaturalist users in Ontario, their perspectives, and the data production activities that engage them in biodiversity citizen science efforts.
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Alice Xu (2023). Biodiversity Citizen Science Data Production Through iNaturalist: An Anthropological Exploration. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/19417