Citizen Science for the Senses

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Listen up! Our editors sniffed out a list of projects to lay your hands on and sink your teeth into. See for yourself!

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The Smell Experience Project

Changes in odor perception can be a symptom of a disease or a side effect of medication. Smell Experience Researchers need your help to better understand changes in our sense of smell. Get started!


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The Genetics of Taste

Help scientists learn about the gene that helps us taste “bitter!” The Denver Museum of Nature & Science is conducting a live research study, Genetics of Taste: A Flavor for Health, happening right now in the permanent exhibit Expedition Health. Get started!


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NoiseTube needs citizen scientists to monitor noise pollution. Participants install a free mobile application on their cell phone and measure the level of noise in their area. Get started!


Screen shot 2014-01-31 at 8.21.20 AMField Photo Library

A photo taken in the field helps scientists and citizens to document changes in landscape, wildlife habitats, impacts of drought and flood and fire, and more! Users can upload, edit, query and download geo-referenced field photos in the library. All photos are also linked with satellite image series images (MODIS), so that people can “see” the changes over time. Get started!


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Public Laboratory Spectrophotometer

A spectrometer is a ubiquitous tool for scientists to identify unknown materials, like oil spill residue or coal tar in urban waterways. But they cost thousands of dollars and are hard to use — so the Public Lab community has designed one that you can build with your own hands! Get started!

This post originally appeared on the SciStarter blog.

We’re taking citizen science to the NBA! Meet us at the 76ers game on 2/18 when we launch microbe collection kits into the stands for Project MERCCURI! It’s Science at the 76ers night!

AND…SciStarter is organizing a series of citizen science activities on the concourse at the game! Each of the EIGHT Philadelphia organizations whose microbes will fly on the International Space Station via Project MERCCURI, will engage fans in science!

If you’d like your citizen science project featured on SciStarter, email

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Citizen Science for the Senses by CitizenSci, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

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One Response to Citizen Science for the Senses

  1. JMI says:

    Really interesting roundup Lily, thanks​!​

    I think that you would be really interested in some recent research that I have come across explaining crowds, open innovation, and citizen science.​ ​In particular I feel you may find these two emerging pieces of research very relevant:

    – The Theory of Crowd Capital

    – The Contours of Crowd Capability

    And you may also enjoy this blog about the same too:

    Powerful stuff, no?

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