Science and Nature

Inclusion in citizen science: The conundrum of rebranding

Abstract

Because the scientific community, take care of society extra broadly, reckons with lengthy-standing challenges around accessibility, justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion, we would be wise to listen to to factors and lessons emerging in debates around citizen science. When practitioners first positioned the modifier “citizen” on science, they meant to indicate an inclusive variant all the plot in which by plot of the scientific conducting that enables those without formal scientific credentials to gain in authoritative knowledge production (1). On condition that contributors are overwhelmingly white adults, above median revenue, with a college diploma (2, 3), it is obvious that citizen science is in most cases now not truly an egalitarian variant of science, start and obtainable to all contributors of society, namely those underrepresented in the scientific conducting. Some query whether or now not the term “citizen” itself is a barrier to inclusion, with many organizations rebranding their capabilities as “community science.” Nonetheless this co-opts a term that has lengthy referred to obvious, grassroots practices of those underserved by science and is thus now not synonymous with citizen science. Swapping the terms is now not a benign motion. Our goal is now not to defend the term citizen science, nor present a novel name for the self-discipline. Rather, we aim to discover what the self-discipline, and the a few publics it serves, would possibly presumably maybe maybe capture or lose by replacing the term citizen science and the aptitude repercussions of adopting change terminology (in conjunction with whether or now not a straightforward name change on my own would enact powerful to beef up inclusion).

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