The Policy & Practice of Climate Change & Water

Citizen Science

iRain Mobile App: Using Citizen Science to Support Water Management

A new mobile app has been designed to help monitor the impacts of climate on the water cycle. The iRain mobile app utilizes citizen science via crowd-soured data to track precipitation globally. iRain is available for iOS or Android devices. You can find the mobile app on iTunes or in the Google Play store.

iRain has been created to serve as a mobile version of the web-based iRain tool ( developed by the Center for Hydrometeorology and Remote Sensing (CHRS) at the University of California – Irvine, directed by Dr. Soroosh Sorooshian, with support from a broad range of partners, including USACE IWR-ICIWaRM and UNESCO. It is designed to facilitate the collection of real-time global satellite precipitation observations, allowing its users to track rainfall events all over the globe. This can be particularly useful in regards to emergency planning, to warn and inform individuals of dangerous hydrological events. The data are gathered via the PERSIANN-CCS system, which has been under development for two decades. Users can also use the crowdsourcing functionality of the app to report their local rainfall information to supplement our data. For researchers, these data are useful as it provides a convenient and user-friendly mobile means of accessing the data that is currently available on the web version of iRain. Read More...

WWF Climate Crowd: Crowdsourcing human responses to climate change

What do climate change, wildlife, rural communities around the world, and collaborations between WWF and organizations like the Peace Corps have in common? WWF Climate Crowd!

Far removed from decision-making bodies and financial resources, rural communities are often left to their own devices to cope and adapt to changes in weather and climate. Indigenous, local and traditional knowledge systems could be a very useful tool for adapting to climate change, but these have not been used consistently in existing efforts. Additionally, most research has focused on the direct impacts of climate change on biodiversity, but largely neglected how human responses to climate change are impacting biodiversity.

WWF Climate Crowd is a new initiative to crowdsource information on how these communities are responding and how their responses impact biodiversity. We are collaborating with other organizations to collect this data, find and implement ways to better help communities adapt, and alter our conservation strategies in light of the information we gather.

To find out more on this new initiative, tune in to an upcoming webinar: Wednesday, May 11 at 10am EST
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Video - FreshWater Watch Program and Citizen Science

During World Water Week in Stockholm, AGWA Steering Committee member Christine Chan took some time to interview Steven Loiselle, Senior Freshwater Research Manager for FreshWater Watch. The two discussed the citizen science approach utilized by FreshWater Watch and how it relates to similar bottom-up approaches supported by AGWA. Dr. Loiselle explains some of the benefits of citizen science, including how it can help bridge the gap between science and policy. You can watch the full interview in the video below.