Crowdfunding the Azolla fern genome project: a grassroots approach.
Much of science progresses within the tight boundaries of what is often seen as a "black box". Though familiar to funding agencies, researchers and the academic journals they publish in, it is an entity that outsiders rarely get to peek into. Crowdfunding is a novel means that allows the public to participate in, as well as to support and witness advancements in science. Here we describe our recent crowdfunding efforts to sequence the Azolla genome, a little fern with massive green potential. Crowdfunding is a worthy platform not only for obtaining seed money for exploratory research, but also for engaging directly with the general public as a rewarding form of outreach.
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