Free Community Benefits   |   Membership Categories   |   Member Benefits   |   Fees   |   How to Join   |   Membership Manual

Thank you for your interest in the Citizen Science Association (CSA)! You’ll find information here about our free services for this community, and the benefits of joining as a paying member. Join our active and growing community!

NEW IN 2018: Membership Categories have been updated based on feedback from 2017, and new services will be added throughout the year.

Details on each membership type are available further down this page.

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Our inaugural members – those who joined between 2014 and 2016 – helped to shape the Association by sharing their insights and preferences regarding direction, priorities, and leadership. Over a two-and-a-half year period, from the time of launch through September 2016, CSA asked interested individuals to respond to a Membership Questionnaire [closed as of 1 Oct 2016]. Anonymous responses to this questionnaire have helped inform what we offer to paid members, and what we will continue to offer to the community for free.

Q: Which potential benefits make membership appealing to you?
(Choose up to three, in order of preference)

Transition to Paid Membership

Since its inception in 2012, CSA has been largely a volunteer-run organization. Funds to run the first “official” CSA conference in 2015, build the website, develop the original citizen science toolkit, and enable travel for association planning have come from a variety of grants from the National Science Foundation, the Noyce Foundation, and the Bechtel Foundation.

The CSA board and partners will continue to seek funding from these and other supporters, but relying strictly on grant funding is not an adequate strategy for long term sustainability. Therefore, CSA has instituted a paid membership to ensure the short- and long-term financial health of the rapidly growing organization. Resources are required to support staff salary, website development and hosting, contract work, and administrative expenses, all in support of upcoming conferences, professional development opportunities, project planning and evaluation tools, and our open-access journal, Citizen Science: Theory and Practice, which is available to anyone who can access the web. While paid membership won’t generate income sufficient to achieve all of these goals, it is a crucial component to our longer-term strategy to meet the needs of our members and the field.

Free Community Benefits

Many of the benefits of early, free membership in the Citizen Science Association remain free. These include:

Membership Categories

Membership is open to both individuals and organizations.

Benefits of Paid Membership

Membership benefits align with and support the Association’s mission, and provide concrete services to all who join. Dues support costs associated with operating the Association, including salary for staff, website development and maintenance, and the development of mission-oriented programs and resources. These include concrete benefits to individuals and organizations, such as:

1. Networking, Coordination and Professional Development Opportunities

  • Discounted registration to conferences, workshops and meetings.
  • Member-preferred advanced access to professional development opportunities (e.g., workshops, webinars).
  • Networking opportunities including through participation in Association-sponsored events, discussion lists, regional or thematic chapters, and working groups.
  • Access to shared workspaces to support chapters and working groups.
  • Access to and inclusion in mapped, online member directory.
  • Mentoring opportunities.

2. Enhanced Participation and Access to Association Resources

  • Access to member only portion of website (e.g., containing archived webinars, map-based member directory, Board of Directors minutes/Annual report with financials).
  • 10% member discount on journal publication fees for Citizen Science: Theory and Practice.
  • Eligibility to be nominated for and receive awards for noteworthy accomplishments.

3. Opportunities to Engage in Association Development and Operations

  • Participate and vote in General Assembly and other elections.
  • Initiate, join and participate in chapters and working groups.
  • Eligibility to be nominated for and elected to the Board of Directors.

4. Access to Promotional Opportunities

  • Organizational members will be recognized on the Association website.
  • Corporate members will be granted access to the Association member directory once per year for marketing purposes.
  • All members will be eligible to receive citizen science souvenirs, wearables and gifts (SWAG) on an as-available basis.

5. Access to Apply for Scholarship Funds

  • Eligibility to apply for scholarships to mitigate the costs of attending an Association-sponsored conference, workshop or event.
  • Eligibility to apply for and receive scholarships to reduce or eliminate costs of publishing in Citizen Science: Theory and Practice.

Membership Fees

Applications for membership to the Association will be administered on a continual (rolling) basis throughout the year. The following fees will be applied annually for individuals and entities:

Category Annual Dues*
Individual Level 1 (Under $30,000 USD or equivalent annual self-declared income) $30
Individual Level 2 ($30,000 – $60,000 USD or equivalent annual self-declared income) $60
Individual Level 3 ($60,000+ USD or equivalent annual self-declared income) $90
Organization: Non-profit/Government/Educational (up to 5 staff) $400
Community-based group (up to 5 memberships) $100
Organization: Corporate (up to 5 staff) $600
Organization: Institutional (6+ staff) $1500

*All dues are in US dollars

Discounted membership options

An affiliate discount is available for any category (20%) if the applicant is a current, fee paying member of the European Citizen Science Association (ECSA), the Australian Citizen Science Association (ACSA), or any other organization with which the Citizen Science Association has an MOU or formal collaboration/partnership. Your respective organization can provide you with a promo codes for discounts – or you can email to inquire.

If you qualify, and if you choose to use this option, low-cost memberships are also available at the annual rated of $30 for the following groups. Please register as Individual Level 1.

  • Student
  • Youth Educator (e.g., K-12, afterschool)
  • Retiree
  • Veteran

If you believe you qualify for a discounted membership not noted here, please contact the Citizen Science Association Membership Committee (at

Inclusive Membership for All

In accordance with Association values, the Board wants to ensure membership is open to anyone who wishes to be a member of the Association. If you are unable to pay membership dues as a result of financial hardship, complications due to monetary transfer across countries, or for another reason (e.g., we refer to this list of countries eligible for fee waivers), please email the Membership Committee describing your circumstances ( Your request will be reviewed as soon as possible.

Becoming a Member

Links to join as an individual or as an organization are at the very top of this page. Just want to receive news about all free community benefits? Sign up for one of our newsletters:

Once paid membership opens, a dues-paying member shall be entitled to all of the benefits available to individual or organizational members for a twelve-month period, commencing on the date of the Member’s enrollment. Members can renew their membership during or after the membership term by forwarding the relevant fee to the Association. The Association reserves the right to change or cancel the terms and conditions of this policy at any time, with or without notice to any Member.

Automated reminders will be sent to members to pay their annual dues beginning 30 days before 12 months has passed. Reminders will continue to be sent on a regular basis until the renewal date, and up to one year after the renewal date for each member if dues have not been paid. However, member privileges will be revoked 15 days after the renewal date has passed.

Still looking for more details about membership? Read the Citizen Science Association Membership Manual.