Law and Policy Working Group

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Welcome to the Law and Policy Working Group

Law and policy are important for citizen science in two ways: first, they shape the work of citizen scientists; and second, citizen science is increasingly being used to influence policy decisions and actions. In the latter arena, citizen science outcomes are increasingly expanding beyond education and research into influencing management and regulatory decisions and informing regulatory decisions and legal enforcement.

Spectrum of Citizen Science Data Use
Source: A vision for Citizen Science at EPA, NACEPT, December 2016

This working group seeks to enhance understanding both of laws and policies that citizen scientists must be aware of in doing their work, and of the ways citizen scientists can have a policy impact.

What we do

The Law and Policy Working Group is intended to be inclusive and diverse, connected and engaged locally, nationally, and globally, and to address the needs of the citizen science community. Our activities are driven by the interests of our members. Current activities include:

  1. Monthly calls to hear from experts and discuss issues relating to both aspects of the the group’s mission. (Calls are listed here.)
  2. Webinars for a deeper dive on key topics. (Upcoming webinars are shown here).
  3. Answering legal questions from citizen scientists in the field. (See our legal question tool here.)
  4. Other projects based on the interests of working group members.

If you’d like more information about this working group, please contact us at law_policy_cochair@citizenscience.org or sign up on our member page. We’d also welcome your thoughts and ideas on how this working group might benefit the citizen science community, please provide your feedback in the following form (also available HERE).