Why citizen science may shine, even in Trump's world

As we brace for fresh environmental onslaughts to be leveled by the incoming administration, a sleeper cell in the federal government itself may just provide resistance—and even resilience—in the face of it. On November 15, 2016, members of a 300-plus member grassroots “Federal Community of Practice on Crowdsourcing and Citizen Science” met at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (the Wilson Center) to discuss transition strategies upon the changing of the guard. Surprisingly, they were not depressed. Interest in citizen science in the ranks of federal employees has been building since at least 2009, when a White House memo on transparency seeded the idea of opening up govern

One Tam, Two Mountains

For those of us who live near Mount Tamalpais in Marin County, California, the mountain is more than the central organizing principle of our landscape. The multitude of habitat types, the 360-views of the coast, the mysteries of crumbly green serpentine outcroppings, all comprise a geography of our collective imagination. We love Tam, and poets sing its praises. Recently I read an interview with Greg Sarris, Chairman of the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, in which he remarked that while Sonoma Mountain is sacred to the Indians here and the scene of their creation story, Mount Tam was historically considered taboo. “That’s where the poisoners drink,” he said. “And you went up ther

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Illustration by Michael Schwab @ michaelschwab.com
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