Expanding the Reach of Science
By bridging the gap between scientists and society, public science opens frontiers to reconcile humans with nature, stewardship approaches and sustainable practices for the Anthropocene. An emerging field that is both a scholarly area of study and a practice for carrying out science in the public sphere, public science draws on areas of communication, open science and citizen science to bring the land-grant mission into the 21st century. Traditionally, researchers would first develop knowledge in specific areas and then to disseminate it to the public through extension education. But today, public science techniques and technologies offer additional options to engage with the public from the beginning to the end of the research process.
Collaborations between scientists and citizens make new discoveries, build mutual trust and help all participants converge on a shared understanding of the world, ensuring that academic institutions remain relevant to society. In an age of increasing controversy and declining trust, multiple federal funding agencies have declared open access, public participation in research, and improved communication of science as national priorities.
Many of our Forestry and Environmental Resources faculty are already participating in public science through their research, including two faculty members who joined the Chancellor’s Faculty Excellence Program Leadership in Public Science. As a one of our core strengths, we plan to become an international leader in:
- Preparing graduates to be highly competitive with scholarship and skills in science communication and open data stewardship
- Making unique discoveries by carrying out a broad array of citizen science projects
- Gaining fundamental insights by studying the design and social and conservation outcomes of citizen science
Public Science Research Features
Partnering With Hunters, Anglers For Citizen Science
A new citizen science project is enlisting the hunting and fishing communities to help scientists understand the basic biology of a host of fish, bird and mammal species. The “Got Guts?” project is being launched by NC State University and the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences.
How Coyotes Conquered the Continent
Researchers at NC State along with the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences have created a comprehensive range history of coyotes to determine where they came from and how they spread across North America and Central America.
Can Citizen Science Reverse the Extinction of Experience?
researchers from the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, North Carolina State University, Rutgers University, and the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology propose nature-based citizen science as a means to reconnect people to nature.
Meet Our Public Science Faculty
- Marcelo Ardón, Assistant Professor
- Caren Cooper, Associate Professor
- Fred Cubbage, Professor
- Jason Delborne, Associate Professor
- Josh Gray, Assistant Professor
- George Hess, Professor
- Madhusudan Katti, Associate Professor
- Roland Kays, Associate Professor
- Zakiya Leggett, Assistant Professor
- Ross Meentemeyer, Professor
- Stacy Nelson, Professor
- Krishna Pacifici, Assistant Professor
- Nils Peterson, Professor
- Louie Rivers, Assistant Professor