Citizen science recovering volcanic farmlands

Recovering a story from 2016, when in a collaboration between Australia and Indonesia, the organization HackteriaLab worked as usual on local existing community projects, but this time helping specificaly to recover volcanic farmlands around Mount Merapi.

This Indonesian campaign puts science – and also the laboratory – right into the hands of communities; combining the arts, scientific research, and technology with some fundamental science lessons for the public.

Hackteria has participants in India, Spain, Switzerland, Slovenia, Singapore, Indonesia as well as Australia, and also their efforts at bringing scientific knowledge in the community have actually been taped in a docudrama and also book.

2014 workshop around Mount Merapi

In 2014, the HackteriaLab celebration in Yogyakarta brought 40 researchers, musicians, and also academics with each other for 2 weeks to deal with existing local community projects.

The three main focusses were:

  • environmental monitoring of rivers in Jogja, dealing with ‘person campaign’ group Lifepatch – Jogja River Project
  • biodiversity conservation in Wonosadi Forest with the eco-friendly technology neighborhood
  • as well as bio-recovery of Mount Merapi volcanic soil, with the microbiologist community of Universitas Gadjah Mada – where the workshop was hosted.

The volcano Mount Merapi has erupted at least two time in the past 15 years, damaging local farmlands.

“Scientists in the location had been collaborating with these neighborhood farmers to help accelerate the fertility of the dirt with bio-recovery techniques. We invited the participants to help with this work, and encouraged them to look into generic lab devices, and new methods as well as suggestions that could aid the researchers,” says Andreas Siagian, Co-Director of the 2014 HacketriaLab.

Various other projects included the development of a DIY microscope web cam; a DIY 3D printing press; plant tissue culturing and also cloning; and also mechanical sculpturing.

Collaboration with Victor Chang Institute

The Victor Chang Institute in Sydney donated materials as well as sustained the attendance of Dr Matt Baker, that helped with training as well as running several of the tasks.

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