citizen science

Participatory Science

« better protection "Inextricably accompanied by" Better know ". Thus, the study and long-term monitoring of biodiversity can assess the impact of global change on ecosystems.

Long-term monitoring of biodiversity requires several things:

  • a field study protocol, standardized and applicable on a large scale,
  • of the work force ; time,
  • material and financial resources.

The need for its elements, and the difficulty of obtaining them, often hamper research. The science participatory, involving non-specialists lovers are a solution.

Today the development of participatory sciences is a fact of society. It emerges from the various studies carried out on the subject that nearly 200 participatory science initiatives exist in France today. These programs are very varied, most of them concern terrestrial flora or fauna, and all are based on the principle of participation of amateurs in the collection of information in nature. As for the Mediterranean Sea, there are 22 participatory science programs, including Cybelle Méditerranée.

Definition of participatory science

Participatory sciences programs involving public participation as part of a scientific approach. The application of these citizen science in biodiversity field includes three objectives:

  • Having data on the nature and biodiversity to study his health (long term monitoring)
  • Produce educational tools and education to nature and biodiversity
  • Form a community.

What is the interest of participatory science?

Participatory sciences will first of all be of pedagogical and educational interest for contributors. They are also a way to act for the planet, concrete and easy! But participatory science is a major asset for scientists and managers. The data collected is proving to be increasingly relevant and useful. They lead to decisive research for taking global changes (eg climate change) into account by politicians and managers. Studies carried out on existing programs show that studies based on participatory data have a much faster concrete impact on local and regional policies than studies based on data collected only by researchers.

Participatory science is thus a tool from which contributors and scientists derive mutual benefit.

Cybelle Planète, an ecology association fully involved in participatory science

Cybelle Planète is strongly involved in knowledge sharing and citizen participation in scientific issues. Participatory science is a new action and is still in its infancy. Much remains to be done to improve existing and future programs.

We participate in multi-thematic research groups on participatory science. The GDR PARCS is a Research-Action-Participative research working group. Cybelle Planète has been involved since 2012 and contributes in particular to collective work on citizen analysis of data.

We are also part of a participatory science network with which we contribute and lead participatory workshops.

- Read the report of the participatory workshop led by Cybelle Planet 06 October 2017 during the Festival "All Sentinels" organized by the network Sentinelles de la Mer, CPIE Bassin de Thau. Practical guide: define the rules for the provision and use of participatory data.

Participatory marine sciences

The marine domain, still too little known, covers approximately 94% of the whole of our national territory. However, there are few participatory science programs focused on the sea (around 20% of the programs listed in France). This figure can be explained by a historical context where participatory sciences in terrestrial environments were born more than a century ago, against fifteen years for the marine environment. It should also be noted that the material constraints at sea are quite high, if only for the practice of yachting.

However, in recent years new participatory programs in the Mediterranean Sea have emerged and this trend tends to accelerate. These include, among others: