How technology is empowering citizen scientists to tackle real problems

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     Water samples from Philadelphia are being tested for lead levels. (Screen capture from The Crowd & The Cloud series)

    Water samples from Philadelphia are being tested for lead levels. (Screen capture from The Crowd & The Cloud series)

    The power of citizen science is explored in “The Crowd & The Cloud,” a four-part series airing on Sundays at 1p.m. on WHYY-TV

    The power of citizen science is explored in “The Crowd & The Cloud,” a four-part series airing on Sundays at 1p.m. on WHYY-TV

    The program explores how everyday people, armed with their smartphones and tablets, are trying to tackle real problems. 

    This Sunday’s episode explores efforts by citizens groups to augment the Philadelphia Water Department’s collection of data regarding the safety of the city’s drinking water.

    NewsWorks Tonight host Dave Heller spoke with Geoffrey Haines-Stiles and Erna Akuginow, producers of the four-part series. Listen to their conversation below.

    Note: The Philadelphia Water Department was not interviewed as part of the citizen science documentary. The water department said it has problems with how its response is portrayed in the film. It plans a more detailed response in the coming days.

    Editor’s note, April 19, 2017: The Philadelphia Water Department’s response can be read in full below.

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