Missouri Botanical Garden Open Conference Systems, TDWG 2016 ANNUAL CONFERENCE

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Quasi-F – An Infrastructure for the Quality Assurance of Citizen Science Data in Germany
Falko Glöckler

Building: CTEC
Room: Auditorium
Date: 2016-12-06 05:15 PM – 05:30 PM
Last modified: 2016-10-15


In Germany there is a long standing tradition in doing citizen science and thus a large citizen science community, particularly with focus on life science. A large number of people are highly engaged with collecting biodiversity data of their favorite taxon group and in their favorite environments. This community has a wide range regarding their knowledge (from amateurs up to experts) on species, environmental parameters, but also scientific methods for collecting the data. Furthermore, today's increased usage of mobile apps makes data gathering much easier than decades before. However, up to date only few professionals train a large number of interested amateurs. As a consequence they have to cope with all the quality assurance of an increasing amount of data records on their own in order to be able to provide reliable datasets to higher offices like the Federal Bureau of Nature Conservation or data portals like GBIF. Moreover, there are too many differences in applied methods and a general lack of national standards for the quality assurance. However, this is needed in order to gain full benefit from the data in biodiversity research and governmental nature conservation.

In order to approach this impediment the biodiversity informatics department at the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin and other collaborating German partners submitted a three-year project proposal. The project aims for the establishment of a national web-based quality assurance infrastructure with a comprehensive web API that can be easily integrated in the various biodiversity citizen science projects. It will (1) standardize the methods of quality checks and document them transparently for data re-use; (2) establish an in situ quality feedback for the end users, which enables them to cross-check and verify their observation directly in the field, to correct their data or gather additional data; (3) develop and investigate a measure for the data quality assessment which will be proposed as a new standard for the re-use of citizen science data in governmental nature conservation and biodiversity research in Germany.

The presentation will illustrate the general ideas of the submitted project, related preliminary studies and preparatory work. Furthermore, potential issues and challenges will be discussed.