University of Maryland
Home / Events

BBL: Community-based Data Validation in Citizen Science

Event Details


HCIL (2105 Hornbake, South Wing)


Technology-supported citizen science has created huge volumes of data with increasing potential to facilitate scientific progress. However, verifying data quality is still a substantial hurdle due to the intended applications of data and limitations of existing data quality mechanisms. The talk discusses results from a paper that received an “Honorable Mention” at CSCW 2016 which investigated community-based data validation practices in an online community where people record what they see in the nature. We also examined the characteristics of records of wildlife species observations that affected the outcomes of collaborative data quality management. The findings describe the processes that both relied upon and added to information provenance through information stewardship behaviors, which led to improvements in indicators of data quality. The likelihood of community-based validation interactions were predicted by several factors, including the types of organisms observed and whether the data were submitted from a mobile device. Unexpected and counter-intuitive results reflect the realities of the material world in which mobile apps are deployed, and suggest implications for design and practice. The talk concludes with discussion of the evolution of recent developments in Federal policies related to crowdsourcing and citizen science.


Dr. Wiggins is an Assistant Professor at Maryland’s iSchool and director of the Open Knowledge Lab at UMD. She studies the design and evolution of sociotechnical systems for large-scale collaboration and knowledge production. Andrea’s current work focuses on the role of technologies in citizen science, evaluating individual and collective performance and productivity in open collaboration systems, and the dynamics of open data ecosystems. Andrea serves on several working groups and advisory boards for citizen science projects across a variety of scientific disciplines, and regularly advises federal agencies and nonprofit organizations on citizen science project and technology design.

HCIL BBLs are supported by Yahoo!