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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/L026996/1
Title: Digital Conservation: Birds, Blogs and Volunteers
Principal Investigator: van der Wal, Professor R
Other Investigators:
Siddharthan, Dr A
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Inst of Biological and Environmental Sci
Organisation: University of Aberdeen
Scheme: Standard Research - NR1
Starts: 01 March 2014 Ends: 01 April 2016 Value (£): 10,108
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Artificial Intelligence Human-Computer Interactions
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Sports and Recreation Environment
Creative Industries
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
Governments and NGOs worldwide devote considerable efforts to wildlife conservation. Building public support for such initiatives often involves web-based approaches, which facilitate bringing the natural world closer to people. Web-based approaches can be particularly effective for, often harder to reach, younger audiences. Our Natural Language Generation (NLG) research has investigated the use of automatically generated narratives for communicating complex data to audiences. We developed an exciting new website using NLG to bring up-to-date information about wild animals in their natural environment to both nature and technology enthusiasts. We believe this work pioneers communication of nature conservation through new media.

For Blogging Birds to become a conservation tool, however, it is required to create an actual following. We propose the following three activities and give indicative budget implications in brackets.

1. Working with the RSPB to learn how best to reach large audiences.

2. Engaging with user communities, thereby exposing target audiences with our current website and variations thereof to capture what dimensions are most important to actual users.

3. Building in new functionality based on the above two activities, most likely including social media and several ways in which users can interact with the tool and its users.
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Organisation Website: http://www.abdn.ac.uk