Blog Post

New changes to Citizen Science: Theory & Practice

Guest post by Muki Haklay and Rick Bonney, from the Editorial Board of Citizen Science: Theory & Practice
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If you’ve visited the website of our journal, Citizen Science: Theory and Practice, you might have noticed some changes. Here is a brief update:  2018 launched with three papers published in January, February, and March and several more in the queue for this spring. This year we will also start to see special issues. The first, on ethics in citizen science, is being edited by Lisa Rasmussen and Caren Cooper, and has had several manuscripts submitted and under review. A second special issue on policy and citizen science will be edited by Anne Bowser and Lea Shanley, who have received more than 30 abstracts for consideration.

You might also have noticed that we are now accepting papers in two new categories–meeting reports and methods. Our aim in the journal is to fill the gap of information amongst citizen science practitioners and researchers, and these two types of papers will allow for sharing of information following requests that we have received from the field.

Meeting reports are summaries of meetings and workshops about citizen science, written in a way that will allow a person who did not participate in the workshop to understand the content and issues that were discussed, why those issues were discussed, and how the meeting has contributed to growth of the field. Meeting reports should be about 4000-6000 words in length. Checking with the editors before preparing meeting reports is an excellent idea. The first paper in this category, a synthesis of issues discussed at the first meeting of the European Citizen Science Association in June, May, 2016, was published on May 1st of this year (Hecker et al. 2018).

Methods papers describe a methodology that is used in citizen science settings in a way that will allow other people to reuse it or learn from it. They can be fairly short, about 3000-4000 words, and should show how they have been developed, tested, and used with participants or potential participants in citizen science projects. Several methods papers are currently in review.

We have also updated the text on the journal website to make it clearer and more comprehensive. For example, descriptions of the types of papers accepted by the journal have been expanded, and we are adding information to the author’s guidelines. Also, if you click on the table of contents for the first two issues of the journal (which you do by going under “content” and then “issue archive”), we have now provided full credit for the co-editors who contributed to setting up those issues.

Our thanks to the many reviewers who have contributed their time and expertise in helping us to launch and maintain this new journal.

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