Terms of Reference for Report on Emerging Trends in E-Science: Citizen Science, Mobile technologies and ICTs
UNESCO’s Science Policy and Capacity Building Division is recruiting a consultant to produce the report:
Emerging Trends in E-Science: Citizen Science, Mobile technologies and ICTs
Ten years after the adoption of the Geneva Plan of Action and on the path towards the targets set for 2015, the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) is undertaking a systematic review of the implementation of its objectives. Action Line 7, “ICT applications: benefits in all aspects of life”, includes action points on e-science, mainly focusing on improving knowledge exchange between scientists and between scientists and citizens. Within the framework of these action points, UNESCO’s Science Sector seeks a consultant to undertake a foresight report by reviewing the current status, by analyzing trends and emerging innovations in citizen science in connection with ICTs and by formulating recommendations that will help UNESCO in shaping its strategy for the post-2015 world.
UNESCO seeks a consultant to undertake a foresight report by reviewing the global state of this emerging trend and make recommendations for future developments. Spanning the mandates of all five of UNESCO’s programme sectors (Education, Natural Sciences, Social and Human Sciences, Culture, and Communication and Information) it will also assist the Organization in identifying its future strategic directions and programming priorities in relation to the aspirations, innovations and needs of indigenous peoples, as well as shaping its strategy within the post-2015 UN development framework.
An emerging trend of considerable interest has been the increasing involvement of civil society, including urban inhabitants, rural communities and indigenous peoples, in the collection, verification, analysis, sharingand dissemination of data of a scientific nature. This phenomenon, often called “citizen science” takes many forms, for instance citizens using internet and mobile technologies to collect and share observations about environmental changes, the monitoring of biodiversity or the sharing of innovations in farming, animal husbandry or other production systems. These collective data from 100s or even thousands of citizens provide valuable insights into a range of subjects and are democratizing and transforming science.
Objectives and outputs
Working closely with the relevant Unit at UNESCO, the consultant shall:
- Carry out a meta-survey of existing publications and surveys on the multi-stakeholder landscape with reference to the use of ICTs for citizen science, in the context of WSIS Action Line 7, e-science.
- Consult with appropriate partners to identify the most relevant programmes, projects and surveys which demonstrate the innovative use of ICTs by rural and indigenous peoples to contribute to environment observing systems and community-based biodiversity or natural resource monitoring (for example Cybertracker in southern Africa, Igliniit in Arctic Canada or community monitoring of forests in Cameroon).
- Analyse the collected data to identify emerging trends and make recommendations to better understand emerging applications of ICTs in citizen science as well as role of science in building UNESCO’s inclusive Knowledge Societies.
- Write, edit and prepare for publication the results of the survey (including a one page outline of report for review at an early stage).
The successful candidate will have demonstrable experience with and/or knowledge of the following areas:
- The WSIS process
- Citizen science, in particular the use of ICTs to facilitate citizen science;
- Rural and/or indigenous peoples’ issues, including innovative uses of ICTs for community development;
- Must have excellent writing ability in English;
- The ability to read and communicate in one or more of the other five official languages of UNESCO (French, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Arabic) will be an asset.
The edited and revised report must be submitted by 30 November
The application should include i) a curriculum vitae; ii) a sample of work; and iii) a cover letter outlining how the candidate meets the requirements of the consultancy and the reason(s) for their interest. Queries and application should be sent to:
WSIS E-science Indigenous Peoples’ Consultant Search
Small Islands and Indigenous Knowledge Section
1, rue Miollis
Review of applications will begin 20 August 2012.
To download this announcement on pdf, please click here