We are delighted to announce the launch of our new project empowered by Scico under the title “Citizen science in the remote Cyclades: Local paths to change”, which will take place in the islands of Sikinos and Thirasia.
The project involves the creation of a mobile application by high school students of the local communities, in order to map paths and points of interest on the two islands. At the same time, hikers of these paths will be able to contribute to data collection. Through this Citizen Science project, the people themselves will come closer to organized research and data collection on a voluntary basis.
Students will get closer to STEM Education as they will be trained in gathering the necessary information about island trails and in developing an application through MIT’s AppInventor. Accredited SciCo teachers will be visiting the islands in order to provide both students and teachers with the necessary technical support.
The project will also include fieldwork, through hiking on the islands by all groups involved (students, teachers, participants), in order to determine the routes of the app. The locations and points of interest which will be included in the application (antiquities, churches, natural resources, etc.) will be identified and the markings of the paths will be checked. Signs with the selected points of interest (Island Gems) will also be added to the application. Upon completion, the application will be re-evaluated for validity and functionality.
Throughout the program, the wider community will be actively involved in both providing information about the elements that will be included in the application and in promoting the application when it is completed. As the application is used by visitors, they will be able to send data and photos in “real-time”. In this way, it will be possible to collect data for each path’s condition, in order to ensure that the necessary actions have been made, such as cleaning the trash, changing the signs, etc. Another important result will be the observation of biodiversity, i.e., the flora and fauna of a specific geographical location and time.
We are so excited!