Data Cited in Scientific Journal Article
In a recent article about plankton in Bull Shoals Lake, authors
John Havel and Kristen Pattinson cite LMVP data from 1998. This
is significant for a couple of reasons. First, it shows that people
are using the data you collect. Second, it shows that the data
you collect are well regarded.
The article is titled “Spatial Distribution and Seasonal
Dynamics of Plankton in a Terminal Multiple-Series Reservoir”
and appears in the March 2004 volume of Lake and Reservoir Management.
The article deals with patterns of algae and zooplankton in Bull
Shoals Lake and cites data collected at LMVP sites 1 and 2.
At a recent water monitoring conference in Chattanooga, several
volunteer monitoring coordinators were lamenting that their data
were not being used or that they were struggling with having their
data regarded as “legitimate”. One scientist addressed
this concern by saying that “the only way to legitimize
volunteer data to the scientific community is to publish in a
peer-reviewed, scientific journal”. We published an article
in 1998 comparing LMVP data to professionally collected data and
it showed that the two are quite similar. Perhaps that is why
in the Havel and Pattinson article there is no caveat attached
to the reference saying “this is only volunteer data”.
In fact, the authors treat the volunteer data no differently than
they do the “professional” data.