Keynote Speech: Darlene Cavalier
Friday 8th July – 11:00 – 11:45
Chair: Thomas Kaarsted,University Library of Southern Denmark, Denmark
The increasing demand for science literacy is well established and efforts are underway to position libraries as community anchors, empowering them to promote civic engagement and economic vitality by encouraging patrons to take an active role in finding solutions, alongside scientists, to science-based community issues. Citizen science enables people of all ages, cultures, and skills to engage in real scientific research by collecting or analyzing data that is typically shared with professional scientists, while provenly increasing public understanding of science. Engaged citizens will help solve the most critical problems of our time and libraries are crucial conduits to reaching people from all walks of life.
This talk will describe a series of efforts in the United States which aim to strengthen:
the position of libraries as community beacons of citizen science and civic engagement by providing support, training, and resources that leverage public libraries’ desire for meaningful, turnkey, customizable, innovative, and locally situated STEM programming; the public’s growing interest in learning about and participating in local citizen science and civic engagement opportunities and their needs for short-term access to related low-cost instruments and resources; the scientists’ need to recruit, train, equip, and sustain citizen scientists; and SciStarter as an established online, prominent, public resource to support libraries as they bring these communities together.
Cavalier will share links to open-source, reusable resources and professional development opportunities developed through this project including guides to build, circulate, and promote a variety of citizen science kits, host related programs, and connect with community-based organizations to leverage the libraries as community hubs for citizen science.