Engaging Faith-based Communities in Citizen Science through Zooniverse
Engaging Faith-based Communities in Citizen Science through Zooniverse was an 18-month pilot initiative funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Any opinions, findings, or recommendations expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Sloan Foundation. The goals of this initiative were to broaden participation in citizen science (aka people-powered research) among religious and interfaith communities by establishing pathways for them to engage with science using the online Zooniverse platform, and to build positive, long-term relationships with these communities by “putting a human face” on science and scientists. Participating in real scientific research is a powerful way to learn about the process of science and the scientists who conduct research. The Engaging initiative provided models for how creative partnerships can be formed that can help build positive relationships across scientific and religious communities, and empower more people to become collaborators in the quest for knowledge. This evaluation report provides an assessment of the results of the initiative and suggests strategies for extending the reach of this effort in the future, with an eye toward increasing diversity in the scientific community.