Citizen science is public participation and collaboration in scientific research with the aim to increase scientific knowledge (Australian Citizen Science Association 2018).
The goal of Reef Check citizen science is to collect locally and globally relevant data that can help to build appreciation, understanding and protection for reef habitats.
At the core of our monitoring methodology is the globally standardised Reef Check survey approach. Long-term reef monitoring documents how reefs are changing over time and how our actions influence these changes. We also constancy strive to adapt these methods to meet community and science needs.
Our trained citizen scientists, collaborations with external researchers, advice from managers and in-kind support from the tourism industry to access sites help make our work possible. We pride ourselves on training and supporting community members to collect high-quality data that can be used for reef science and management applications.
Citizen science can collect information on scales of time and geography that would not otherwise be possible. This data complements and contributes to information from government and scientific research to fill information gaps, collect information on sites with high community value and share this information in new ways to help more people connect with science and how we can use it to help protect our reefs.