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Citizen Science Research Internship

About Caravan Studios

Caravan Studios is a division of TechSoup, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization located in San Francisco, CA. We believe that communities should be deeply involved in developing tools to solve the problems they face. We build apps for social good and we build them along with the community who needs them.

TechSoup’s mission is to build a dynamic bridge that enables civil society organizations and social change agents around the world to gain effective access to the resources they need to design and implement solutions for a more equitable planet. We operate as a social enterprise consisting of 70 global partner organizations working together to improve lives through the use of technology.

Internship Opportunity

This internship is geared for individuals interested in developing and expanding their knowledge in research and planning at an innovative global organization. Interns will have an opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of the impact of air and water quality on individual’s health and well-being. Interns will also support a project where citizen scientists gather, analyze and share open source data collected through this project, to identify and address air and water pollution in their community.

The main goals of the Citizen Science project are to:

  • Effectively utilize data visualization and analytics to highlight research findings.
  • Engage in an internet of things project where sensors are used to measure air quality in local communities. The result is an opportunity to gather real-time data and work with citizens who are installing and maintaining those sensors.
  • Support citizen science efforts and help them to extract data, and perform data analysis and data visualizations.
  • Provide support for “community anchor institutions” (local organizations like libraries or community ICT centers, whose objective it is to provide access to information) to make this information accessible to communities.
  • Open data civic education and data literacy through project-based learning.
  • The project will result in new actionable community-driven datasets, as well as community-driven data analysis and data visualizations to impact policies and practices. 

Responsibilities

Research

  • Researching area where organizations and communities have citizen scientists working in the areas of air or water quality.
  • Explore model community led projects and case studies where software and data licensing allowed citizens to access data and use software to drive change in their communities.
  • Follow-up on active community projects and the impact of that data.
  • Assist with the preparation of project-related reports and presentations.
  • Produce tables, graphs, fact sheets, maps, and written reports summarizing research results.
  • Explore air and water quality project and develop case studies.
  • Identify resources for registering projects globally.

Planning

  • Planning work will focus on the recruitment, communication, and support of the communities implementing citizen science projects. Examples of tasks and assignment include:
  • Communicate with and engage the community through social media channels and campaigns.
  • Based on findings, create an estimated budget for launching a pilot in regional location. 
  • Develop concept paper and case studies to be utilized for future program planning and development.

Qualifications

  • Excellent writing, analytical, communication, and research skills.
  • Detail oriented and highly organized.
  • Ability to meet deadlines, work collaboratively, and manage several projects at once.
  • Excellent telephone and email communication skills.
  • Ability to represent Caravan Studios and TechSoup in a professional manner.

Structure

  • 10 - 16 hours per week during the school year; possibly full-time during the summer. The exact weekly schedule to be defined with intern.
  • In the Caravan Studios office (San Francisco) at least 1-3 days per week. Depending on the intern, some of this work can be accomplished remotely.
  • Minimum 3-month commitment. 

Benefits

  • Gain hands-on experience in program development and implementation at a small innovative nonprofit organization.
  • Develop portfolio examples to share with future employers.
  • Access to extensive national nonprofit and technologist network.
  • Develop community engagement skills.
  • Access to innovative ideas and products.

Start Date 

June 2019

Salary
This is an unpaid internship, but college credit may be available.

To Apply

Please submit a cover letter including why you are interested in an internship with Caravan Studios, along with a resume and two references.

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