Citizen Science-Projects

Collect, classify, observe – in Citizen Science Projects, laypeople are involved in scientific projects and often contribute significantly in finding solutions to research questions. For this reason, the Cluster of Excellence "The Future Ocean" supports different projects in which interested citizens and/or school students and their teachers have the possibility to actively engage in current research.


In particular, projects that require the collection of large data sets with spatial scales and time scales pose a huge challenge to scientists in regard to capacities, personnel and time. Therefore, scientific participation of citizens in Citizen Science Projects provides a solution from which both citizens as well as scientists profit. Whether during waste collection, while comparing images of plankton or taking photos of findings from the beach – everybody has the possibility to support the work of scientists and thus create new knowledge. In this way, interested people gain insights into scientific standards, current research topics and can strengthen their understanding of science.

Citizen Science Projects with support from the Cluster of Excellence "The Future Ocean":

Plankton-ID – Arrange images of plankton and engage in research in a game-like manner
Citizens are invited to classify and arrange more than 50,000 pictures of sea organisms from the group of the Rhizaria in the Citizen Science Project "Plankton-ID". Rhizaria are unicellular organisms belonging to the animal plankton, the zooplankton and are a precious nutritional source for fish and other larger organisms. In addition, when they die and sink, they transport carbon from the sea surface into the deep sea and thereby play an important role within the cycle of materials of the Earth. The aim of the project is to determine the frequency and the distribution of the unicellular organisms in certain areas of the ocean. Follow the link to reach the website

Coastwards – coastal images from the whole world help to understand the risks of sea-level rise
In the Citizen Science Project "Coastwards", interested laypeople can support scientists from the Institute of Geography at Kiel University to better understand the risks of sea-level rise. People can upload coastal images on the online platform "Coastwards" and in this way contribute to improving known information about the physical characteristics of coasts world-wide. The images are incorporated into a global databank and will provide an important basis for the development of long-term adaption strategies. Follow the link to reach the website

On the Track of Plastic Waste –
In the Citizen Science Project "On the Track of Plastic Waste" of the ocean: lab of the Kiel 'Forschungswerkstatt', a set of laboratories at Kiel University open to school classes, school students from grades five to ten and their teachers deal with the topic micro and macro plastic in the world's oceans.
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