Citizen Science in Cheetah Research

Esther van der Meer*, Femke Broekhuis, Elena V. Chelysheva, Mary Wykstra, Harriet T. Davies-Mostert

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


To facilitate data collection at large spatial and/or temporal scales, professional scientists increasingly involve members of the public (citizen scientists) in research projects related to the natural world. Citizen scientists volunteer to participate in scientific research and typically collect data under the guidance of a professional scientist. Within cheetah research, citizen science is mostly used to collect cheetah sightings and photographs from tourists, safari guides, rangers, and others. The collection of such data is largely based on chance encounters between cheetahs and citizen scientists. Although citizen science provides challenges related to data quality, it is an efficient and cost-effective way to assist with wide-ranging and long-term monitoring of cheetahs. In addition, it raises awareness and provides education. There are opportunities to expand the scope of citizen science in cheetah research and utilize this powerful tool to connect people with nature and promote conservation.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCheetahs: Biology and Conservation
Subtitle of host publicationBiodiversity of the World: Conservation from Genes to Landscapes
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9780128041208
ISBN (Print)9780128040881
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Acinonyx jubatus
  • Awareness
  • Cheetah
  • Citizen science
  • Data collection
  • Education
  • Public
  • Sighting
  • Tourist
  • Volunteer monitoring


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