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CONCERNED CITIZEN CONSERVATIONIST TECHNOLOGIST ENTREPRENEUR
 
Smart Earth
Network
MAMMALWEB: CUTTING-EDGE CITIZEN SCIENCE PLATFORM

A few months ago we posted a challenge on our website, calling any developers interested in building the next stage of a citizen science platform, MammalWeb. We are delighted to announce that the team is in place and we are excited to begin the next stage of the MammalWeb project.

MammalWeb was set up by Durham University and Durham Wildlife Trust to address the gap in mammal research. Compared to birds and butterflies, the mammals of Britain are understudied, due to their often nocturnal and shy nature. This is despite mammals being of huge importance culturally, economically and ecologically. You only have to look at the uproar generated over fox hunts and badger culls to know that people in the UK care deeply for our mammals. MammalWeb taps into the power of the citizen and enables ordinary people to get involved in mammal research, research that helps make effective conservation decisions.

The existing platform collated photographs taken by the camera traps, set up by citizen volunteers, which users could classify based on species present. This helped build up a picture of what species could be found where in the North East. This was successful, with over 45,000 photos classified by 130 users. Now, however, is the next stage which will see MammalWeb transform into a world-leading, fully interactive citizen science platform.

Additions:

  • Full data visualisation capacity which will allow users and scientists to explore mammal data Full analytical toolset that will equip both citizens and scientists with the ability to tackle questions using the data generated
  • Community forum to share information and answer questions
  • Modular format allowing it to be applied to other projects in the UK and overseas

MammalWeb will be unique amongst citizen science platforms, as for the first time, citizens can get involved in data collection, classification and analysis. Importantly, the existing network of community outreach ensures its use as a vital educational tool. MammalWeb, by engaging thousands in science, will inform citizens and better involve them in the current and important environmental issues.

This development will be a result of collaboration with Durham University and Durham Wildlife Trust, SEN and Monterail developers. Monterail, specialist Ruby on Rails developers based in Poland, are very excited to be involved in this project. There will be a workshop shortly involving all four parties that will begin the initial stages of the development process.  Stay tuned for more information! To donate to this exciting project, click below.

MammalWeb : Citizens Transforming Conservation

Links
Monterail
MammalWeb
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