Citizen science for conservation in Africa (CISCA)

12th November 2018

Citizen science for conservation in Africa (CISCA)

This project will help translate citizen science species monitoring into conservation action in Africa.

It will do this through building the capacity of national conservation scientists to become effective citizen science managers.  They will learn skills to analyse their own datasets collected by citizen scientists, so their results can inform conservation practice and policy.  

Project Aims

To translate citizen science biodiversity monitoring into more effective decision making for conservation.

  • Capacity for biodiversity monitoring: Build capacity to analyse citizen science monitoring data, and use these results to inform conservation and policy.
  • Manage citizen science projects for conservation outcomes: Build capacity to recruit, maintain, and train non-experts and maximise the validity of data that they collect.
  • Translate citizen science biodiversity data into policy and action: African scientists will gain skills in creating and presenting outputs of citizen science monitoring data, and in communicating these results to decision makers and conservation managers.

Key Activities

Two integrated workshops will train 15 African scientists (attending both). Participants will be involved in co-designing the second workshop, ensuring it meets their needs.

Workshop topics:

  • Methods for analysing atlas data and producing policy relevant outputs
  • How to be citizen science leaders
  • Skills for engaging with policy and communicating to diverse audiences.

Trainees will apply their skills, supported by the project team.  

Building an African citizen science network.

Citizen Science Seminar: to share results and insights with the wider conservation community and charter the way forward.

Conservation Impact

The project will create a network of African scientists with the skills to analyse their biodiversity atlas data and use these results to influence policy and practice.  It will also generate more effective citizen science projects – across a range of taxa – through enhancing the capacity of African project coordinators.   A lasting impact will be that the project will recruit more ambassadors for nature, through their engagement as citizen scientists.

In the long run, the project will ensure conservation and management is effective and evidence-based, because it will be based on continually up-dated, locally derived knowledge.  

Outputs

Capacity

  • 15 African scientists engaged in an active network 
  • 5 MSc research projects using citizen science data
  • 1 internship at the National Museums of Kenya or participating universities

Monitoring & research

  • 5+ atlases containing citizen science data 
  • Maps published showing core & periphery distributions of priority species 
  • Papers showing species change related to land-use change
  • 10 datasets published on GBIF

Citizen science

  • 800 African citizen scientists across Africa raised as ‘ambassadors for biodiversity conservation’
  • Knowledge of distribution and status of less-well known taxa increased

Project Overview

Type: Funded Projects
Theme: Capacity building and leadership
Project code: CCI-05-18-010
Start date: October 1, 2018
Status: Active

Project team

CCI partners Involved

Other Organisations Involved

National Museums of Kenya (NMK)

Kenya Bird Map Committee (KBMC)

Credits

Thumbnail and banner image: Ismail Mia via Flickr creative commons

Related Resources

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The Collaborative Fund project ‘Citizen science for conservation in Africa (CISCA)‘ will help translate citizen science species monitoring into conservation action in Africa. There is huge potential for citizen science to help conservation managers engage people to collect the valuable data they need for managing their important habitats and species. This project will give these…

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