Participatory sensing marine debris
Shayne, Katherine Elizabeth
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Marine Debris Tracker (MDT) is a mobile app and citizen science program originally sponsored by the NOAA Marine Debris Program and launched in 2011. At the time, MDT was the first app of its kind, allowing users to report litter anywhere in the world. In its more than 6-year timeframe of use, the app and program has helped collect data on over 1.1 million debris items across the globe. Besides collecting data, the app itself serves as an outreach and education tool, creating an engaged participatory sensing instrument. Also, important to Marine Debris Tracker is open data and transparency. A web portal provides data that users have logged allowing immediate feedback to users. The MDT community and dataset continues to grow daily. This thesis presents current usage and engagement, participatory sensing data distributions, areas of active tracking, and, for the first time, a statistical analysis of the MDT opportunistic data through the development and use a Poisson model for Jekyll Island, Georgia.