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Citizen Science takes a bite out of Natural Disasters

Citizen Science Salon iconCitizen Science Salon
By Eva Lewandowski
Aug 2, 2016 5:17 PMNov 19, 2019 8:31 PM


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Collectively, your small acts lead to big results.

Natural disasters, like earthquakes, tornados, and landslides, are frightening and deadly. There are small, but important, steps citizen scientists can take to help predict and respond to these occurrences.Our editors have selected five exemplary projects, below. Be sure to read the safety warnings when applicable.

Find even more projects with the SciStarter Global Project Finder.


The SciStarter Team

Quake-Catcher Network

By linking computers from across the world, this project forms a huge earthquake monitoring network. Schools can also purchase seismic sensors to use for teaching kids about earthquakes.

Get started!

Photo: NOAA


Storm spotters are needed throughout the United States to report severe weather like tornadoes, hail, and thunderstorms to the National Weather Service. This information helps people in your community stay safe!

Get started!

Photo: Avi

Share a Flood Observation

Observant volunteers from across the United Kingdom are needed to report floods of all sizes. Make an observation and help study the causes and management of flooding.

Get started!

Photo: Yuanwei Qin

Field Photo Library

Pictures of landscapes over time can document the impacts of events like drought or fire. You can use your smartphone or GPS-equipped camera to photograph and upload pictures of a landscape near you.

Get started!

Photo: USGS

Did You See It? Report a Landslide

Landslides are both dangerous and costly. If you see a landslide in the United States, you can report it to the US Geological Survey, the government agency that studies them.

Get started!

Want to learn more about the field of citizen science?

Do you run a project that requires tools (telescope, sensor, rain gauge)? We want to hear from you! Please take this brief survey.

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