National Advisory Group

National Advisory Group for Freshwater Citizen Science

The core purpose of the National Advisory Group on Freshwater Citizen Science is to foster well-resourced and coordinated freshwater “citizen science” monitoring programmes in NZ.


Around New Zealand, diverse individuals and communities are engaged in monitoring freshwaters. Their varied motivations are respected and valued. Their monitoring programmes are sustainable. People find monitoring fun and inspiring; they stay involved because they enjoy connecting with other people and the environment. They have access to tools and data that are user-friendly, accurate, reliable, purpose-driven and make knowledge-sharing easy. They have access to training and support to grow in their knowledge, collect reliable data and take responsibility for their waterways. Their growing freshwater expertise is respected and their programmes inform decision making by individuals, communities and water managers.         


  1. To develop and promote a collaborative strategy for fostering well-resourced and coordinated freshwater “citizen science” monitoring programmes in New Zealand.   
  2. To advocate for the contributions of freshwater citizen science monitoring across members’ organisations/sectors, other organisations/sectors, and the public.   
  3. To advocate for funding of freshwater citizen science programmes across New Zealand      
  4. To increase access to high-quality guidance, resources, and tools that support freshwater citizen science monitoring. 


In its vision, purpose, objectives and activities, the Advisory Group upholds the importance of:

  • Robust data – we believe the value of monitoring is greatly increased when data are robust
  • Many benefits – we recognise a wide variety of benefits from engaging in monitoring (e.g., connecting with nature and other people, developing curiosity, learning about the natural world and science) 
  • Openness – we recognise and welcome many different forms of knowledge
  • Diversity – we enable and support a variety of reasons and purposes for monitoring, and a diversity of participants
  • Accessibility – we work to make citizen science monitoring accessible to a wide range of people
  • Making a difference – we encourage the progression from monitoring to freshwater restoration 
  • Inclusiveness – we work with others to improve their ecosystems and share knowledge.

Our Work

Some examples of the work our members are involved in:


Sign up to our newsletter by emailing Amanda Valois - 

National Advisory Group Newsletter No 1 March 2019 [PDF 8.0 MB]


The National Advisory Group comprises representatives from a wide range of organisations involved in developing resources, providing ongoing support, and/or using freshwater citizen science resources for education, training or data collection. 

Current members include:

  • Amanda Valois (Greater Wellington Regional Council) - Chair
  • Alice Bradley (MfE) 
  • Juliet Milne (NIWA)
  • Hazel Meadows (Auckland Council)
  • Tania Bramley (NZ Landcare Trust)
  • Andrea Soanes (Science Learning Hub)
  • Kim Jones (Mountains to Sea Conservation Trust)
  • Alastair Cole (MPI)
  • Rachel Griffiths (Perception Planning)
  • Electra Kalaugher (WSP)
  • Sam McLachlan (Environment Southland)
  • Gabi Ezeta (Auckland Council)
  • Kati Doehring (Cawthron)