Image: categories and example from the index, including: DECODE, Jupyter Notebooks, Global Open Science Hardware Roadmap, and PreTalx

(AKA Citizen Science)

Cite as:



Citation format: The Chicago Manual of Style, 17th Edition

Generation Research. ‘A Community Science Index, 2019.

This is a collaboratively made index of resources to accompany the GenR theme ‘Post-Digital Community Science‘ which ran over May/June 2019. The theme blogposts can all be seen here online.

The index has been organised to represent a number of areas and questions that were felt to be important for researchers looking to organise and plan research projects making use of Community Science. The categories in the index are:

  • projects,
  • collaborative tools and open access,
  • FOSS for open hardware, and
  • spaces.

Additionally a ‘dossier’ has been compiled to mark the end of this round of work on the Community Science theme. The dossier has been drawn up as a more indepth aid for research project design and planning — where insights drawn from this GenR theme enquiry have been condensed with accompanying examples to show innovations and the potential to harness new types of data and relationships with the public.

Community Science Dossier:

Notes for Research Project Design and Planning

The original collaborative list (index building) can be seen here on Crypad as an open pad and will remain open for contributions. Thank you to everyone who took part and for the contributions to the collaborative indexing.

Note: GenR themes now extend after their initial article cluster and if you are interested in making a contribution at any time please get in contact.


The projects listed below have been carefully selected as examples that have gone the extra mile and excelled in their specific area. As an overall observation on the state of the art in Community Science (AKA Citizen Science) is that significant scaling and leading innovations are now coming from the sector. Projects are now able to create international data sets that can be used to test and validate finding, in some cases with ten of thousands of participants. Concerns over privacy of participants is leading to the design of secure data environments — see Open Humans and DECODE as examples — for such scaling using sensors, and for use of technologies such as machine learning.

Open Humans

personal data, tracking, privacy
Data Notebooks


privacy, IoT, data sovereignty
Control and entitlement system for sensor data owners

Smart Citizen Kit

IoT, sensors, hardware
Example in school:

Citizen Science Toolkit

OER, curricular, guide


radiation, air quality, sensors


crowdsourcing, ornithology, data

Curieuze Neuzen

pollution, air quality, crowdsourcing  

Making Sense

OER, guide, sensors

Earth Challenge

citizen science, global, environmentalism

Bat Explorer

crowdsourcing, wildlife, hardware

Citizen Science Games – e.g., Project Discovery

outreach, computer games, crowdsourcing


video conferencing, schools, UX

Flora Incognita

flora, identification, machine learning


EU, programme design, public engagement

Collaborative tools and Open Access

These two categories ‘Collaborative tools’ and ‘Open Access’ have been added as they both are important to enable the public to have a much greater and deeper role in Community Science projects. In the case of Open Access of course it is needed for the public to have those opportunities to engage fully with research. But also it is an issue of trust, as the public can’t be expected to take part in projects if they are not permitted to easily read and use research findings.

FOSS collaborative tools can also mean that designing and launching a platform for a research project is increasingly of low cost, efficient, speedy to implement, and customisable.

Collaborative tools

Jupyter Notebook

coding, writing, replication


workspace, data, community

GitLab Pages

web pages, publishing, toolbox

Matrix protocol/Riot app

messaging, chat, workspace
Matrix Riot


slack, workspace, community


twitter, micro-blogging, community

diagrams, charts, interoperable

Open Broadcaster Software

streaming, webinars, screencasts

Jitsi Meet

video conferencing, meetings, workspace


collaborative writing, privacy, toolbox


spreadsheets, real-time, web


papers, conference, organization

Open Access

Get The Research

search, research papers, peer-review


research papers, plugin, database

Directory of Open Access Books

repository, library, online


data, persistent ID, infrastructure


repository, CERN, persistent ID


research, repository, aggregator

List of Open Access preprint servers (Wikipedia)

research papers, repositories, topic based

FOSS for Open Hardware

An area which is still in need of much development is FOSS software for research instrument hardware. This is needed so that the public can affordably use scientific instruments. Additionally in many instances FOSS software is not available for the instruments and this introduces problems of not being able to audit the instruments systems or replicate research.

Global Open Science Hardware Roadmap

open hardware, FOSS, instruments

A Case for Open Science Hardware

open hardware, FOSS, paper


A significant part of Community Science is about creating social spaces for people to work together, whether that is online/offline or some combination of the two. Below is only a short list of examples aimed at raising awareness of new event formats being used for option for the variety of platforms that can be combined for community building.


spaces, open hardware, IoT

Science in Public conference

spaces, event formats, collaboration


events, spaces, open


spaces, online, git

YES! – Young Economic Summit

economics, school competition, spaces


gamification, games, spaces