Part of the Citizen Science Association Conference, March 13-17, 2019. 12:15 "Where Do They Come from and Where do they Go: Does volunteer starting point predict sustained engagement in citizen science" Location: RCC 303 Staff: Bradley Allf Developing effective strategies for increasing volunteer retention and engagement is a critical goal for citizen science. Volunteer point of origin may be predictive of these dynamics. For this study, we examined how point of entry to SciStarter.org influences behavior on the platform. We found unique engagement characteristics of volunteers that arrive from citizen science-specific arenas. These results indicate that participant point of origin can be predictive of retention and engagement in a citizen science project. Further, our research suggests specific mechanisms by which administrators can improve project outcomes by promoting their project through platforms found to channel better-engaged volunteers.
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