Crowd4Sat was an initiative from the European Space Agency to test crowd-sourcing and citizen science methodologies to utilise, process and validate observations from satellites, including in Earth observation, astronomy, GNSS and ISS based research. Two separate consortia have developed this work.
Our particular approach, led by Imperative Space, focused predominantly on the use of 'human pattern recognition' - i.e. tapping into the powerful and unique ability of the human brain, still unrivalled by computers, to quickly visually assess and classify images. We partnered with Zooniverse, based at the University of Oxford, UK, a world-leading research team in this form of citizen science. Their tried and tested platform has successfully achieved millions of classifications and resulted in numerous research papers, on subjects ranging from astronomy to climate change.
This project looked particularly at the educational opportunities presented by citizen science. We have also provided curriculum resources for each of the project strands and guidance on how citizen science can enable students to participate directly in real research and contribute toglobal challenges.
Commencing in late 2015, we ran a series of demonstration projects, open to all citizens and students, to test the role and impact of citizen science in a range of scientific, environmental and educational areas. These were divided into larger scale 'Core' projects and more experimental 'Challenge' projects.
Our aim was to assess how a range of citizen science techniques can help to make better use of and support the validation of satellite data, and develop novel services and tools.