If you are at all interested in science or history check out Citizen Science.
I already participated in two of the projects:
1. The hour of garden birds by the NABU, Germany
I downloaded the app and sat in the garden for one hour with my mom and counted all the species of birds we could see. A few weeks later the results of 41.000 participants counting birds in gardens and parks were published. I haven’t felt so proud in a long time! 🙂
2. Micro Pasts
More for the patient sort, Micro Pasts is a project by the British Museum (among others) asking participants to mask photos of artefacts for 3D rendering and digitising old hand written index cards.
I studied at university. In Germany studying at university used to enable you to work in academia. You weren’t supposed to wander off onto the general job market but apply your teachings to research and to advancing the work in your chosen field.
There are many reasons young Germans who were educated to become scientists end up working in a different field and a different job. That does not mean we aren’t still scientists at heart.
Enter Citizen Science. Scientific projects that are crowd sourced. You can participate in the scientific advancements of your time even if you thought you left academia behind for ever.
Never mind non-academic people like my mom who enjoy participating in big projects that make science approachable and much more understandable than endless articles in obscure scientific journals. No more questions of “Yes, that seems interesting, but what does it do for me?” My mom was completely happy to have devoted one hour of her time to find out why we have fewer Blackbirds in our garden this year.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject:
Have you participated in projects such as these?
Do they exist in other countries?
How do you think crowd funding will change the research we conduct?
Looking forward to hearing from you!