Bioatlas Crowdsourcing is a highly adaptive citizen science project management tool for data enhancement projects. Physical curation of natural history collections and herbaria has traditionally enlisted networks of taxonomic experts and volunteers to improve these unique biological and cultural resources. We have extended this tradition to include digital curation, presenting crowdsourcing projects in which volunteers assist ongoing collections-based research by completing series of discrete digitization tasks. These fundamental data interpretations are essential to biodiversity research although the scope of contributors to this activity is often limited to collections and herbarium staff.
Bioatlas Crowdsourcing projects will feature datasets spanning a broad range of biodiversity data, from collections and inventories to observation and monitoring programmes. Tasks presented to users in crowdsourcing projects often involve data enhancement other than coordinate assignments, especially common are tasks like text transcriptions and object identification from images. In these cases, it is possible to have multiple runs of the same task and use these independent responses in automated data evaluation procedures.
The objective for the current Bioatlas Crowdsourcing projects is assignment of coordinates based on locality transcriptions. The approach taken for datasets on Swedish fungi from the Museum of Evolution Herbarium was to apply expert knowledge on regional collecting from the local mycologists and mushroom enthusiasts. Procedures for handling new coordinate assignments allow data evaluation to occur in the workflow prior to acceptance and modification of original records. Flexibility in supporting project administration has been applied to several datasets on fungi whose taxonomic and geographic scope reflects interests of administrators and participants.
Access the tool at (requires account): https://ctzn.biodiversitydata.se/
Source code and documentation is available at: https://github.com/bioatlas/pybossa-default-theme
Contact: SBDI Support Center if you are interested in developing a citizen science crowdsourcing project of your own!