RBGE has recently started to explore the use of Citizen Science platforms by providing images and data to Herbaria@Home, a long standing and successful platform for transcribing herbarium specimen labels. The primary focus of this platform is British and Irish specimens, and with the help of their volunteers over 160,000 British and Irish specimens from UK herbaria have been transcribed.
So far we have had great success, the first batch of 250 Scrophulariaceae specimens we provided were completed in 2 weeks! Since then we have been working on preparing specimens from the British and Irish monocots to send to Herbaria@Home, creating minimal records in our database and imaging the specimens.
To help us with this work we were granted funding from the Sibbald Trust for a short project to minimally database and image the genus Carex, this has provided a further 3,192 specimens for transcription. These are now available as part of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh collection.
Whilst our efforts are currently focussed on sending images and data to Herbaria@Home, it is not the only Citizen Science platform we are planning on working with. Once we have more information available on these projects we will let you know here.
In the meantime we would love for you to have a go at transcribing some of our specimens over at Herbaria@Home http://herbariaunited.org/atHome/