FHS Research in Progress Talks - The Citizen Science research model: challenges and opportunities

by Dr. Anne-Marie Nicol, Associate Professor, FHS, SFU

January 17, 2019

Event Type

Seminar Series


January 17, 2019 at 12:00 pm to 1:15 pm


Blusson Hall, Room 9920


The citizen science movement is growing around the world, particularly in the area of environmental health. The public is often enthusiastic about measuring things in the world around them and even provide from sample from themselves, as is evidenced by the American Gut project.  Community members bring a unique perspective to research and their participation can augment and research project and overwhelm research staff often simultaneously.  This talk outlines an SFU Citizen Science project for radon gas that engaged community members in testing their house for radon in the Sea to Sky Corridor. Included in this talk is an overview of factors researchers should consider prior to embarking on this type of project and how the project evolved and grew with community support.


Anne-Marie’s research focuses on the communication of complex scientific and public health information to a range of audiences. Her work is multidisciplinary, crossing the fields of epidemiology, toxicology, social marketing, risk perception and risk assessment. Her particular areas of focus are environmental and occupational exposures that impact health. She has worked at a number of different agencies, including the Occupational Health and Safety Association for Healthcare, the National Collaborating Centre for Environmental Health and the BC Centres for Disease Control. She also worked as an Assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia in the Schools of Environmental Health and Population and Public Health between 2007-2013.

Anne-Marie’s research includes both qualitative and quantitative methods and is often intervention based. She has designed a number of innovative public and occupational health awareness campaigns including Wash with Care, a Bollywood themed pesticide exposure program and the Tick Talk, a multi-lingual tick education program for children on ticks. Anne-Marie is also the current Principal Investigator of the CAREX Canada project, Canada’s only national carcinogen surveillance program. At CAREX, Anne-Marie’s focus is on translating knowledge about occupational and environmental carcinogens to policy makers and cancer prevention stakeholders across the country.


  •  This Seminar Series is open to the SFU and the Broader Research Community.  
  • This seminar may be webcast and recorded.
  • A light lunch will be available at this seminar.  
  • The FHS Research Seminar Series is an Accredited Small Group Learning by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons.