Citizen Science: Probing the Virtues and Contexts of Participatory Research

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Citizen science is an increasingly popular activity, from bird counts to amateur water sample collection to air quality monitoring. Researchers and theorists in the field of science and technology studies (STS) have typically applauded these efforts because they make science more participatory, providing an example of the democratization of science, or, at least, more equitable engagement between experts and the lay public. However, a broader review of the literature on citizen science suggests that participation…