Designing Virtual Organizations for Citizen Science

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Theoretical model for investigation of public participation in scientific research through citizen science projects, which often operate as virtual organizations.

Theoretical model for investigation of public participation in scientific research through citizen science projects, which often operate as virtual organizations.

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  • 1. Designing Virtual Organizations for Citizen Science
    • Wiggins & K. Crowston
    • IFIP 8.2 OASIS workshop
    • 15 December, 2009
  • 2. Motivation
    • Problem : The Tyranny of Scale in scientific research
      • Geographic scale
      • Temporal scale
      • Data scale
    • Solution : Redesigning scientific work
      • eScience: leverages ICTs to overcome challenges
      • Citizen Science: harnesses public interest to enable and extend research
  • 3. Context
    • Citizen Science
      • Scientific research that includes non-scientists as active contributors
      • Often has educational or civic goals in addition to scientific goals
    • Diverse range of intellectual domains, wide variety of modes of participation
    • Usually a type of virtual organization
  • 4. Conceptual Framework
    • Multi-level: distinct but interrelated individual and organizational factors
    • IMOI model: outputs become inputs
    • Contextually aware
      • Scientific processes and goals
        • Explicitly assuming involvement of professional scientists in project design and development
      • Participant processes and goals
  • 5. Initial Model
  • 6. Inputs
    • Individual
      • Demographics
      • Skills
      • Motivations
    • Organizational
      • Task design
      • Organizational design
      • Technology design
  • 7. Moderators
    • Processes
      • Individual: Joining, contributing
      • Organizational: Scientific research, volunteer management, data management
    • Emergent States
      • Individual: Commitment, roles
      • Organizational: Sustainability, community
  • 8. Outputs
    • Individual
      • Contributions
      • Satisfaction
      • Learning
    • Organizational
      • Knowledge
      • Communication
      • Innovation
  • 9. Issues
    • Heterogeneity and scope
      • From stardust to bumblebees
      • From a handful to a horde
    • Participation is like…
      • Crowdsourcing
      • Layered individual work
      • Small group interactions
      • Networks of practice
      • Social movements
  • 10. Future Work
    • Develop typology of citizen science projects, guided by this framework
      • Validate and revise iteratively
    • In-depth case studies
    • Examine “experience design” of contributors’ participation to optimize for:
      • Scientifically valuable outcomes
      • Participant benefit and learning
      • Project sustainability
  • 11. Thanks!
    • Questions?
    • voss.syr.edu