Crowdfunding can be useful for Citizen Observatories that have a limited spatial and temporal scale but which may continue and even expand in the future (e.g. Community Air Pollution Monitoring). Moreover, in reward-based crowdfunding, an all-or-nothing funding strategy can be applied: projects must set funding goals, and supporters only pay if that goal is met. This is appealing to many donors, since it means they are not spending money on a project that does not receive enough donations to operate or complete its mission.
Example from Mapping for Change
Image: Mapping for Change
Mapping for Change is a social enterprise based in London that engages with communities around the UK to map air pollution across the country. In 2016, using online small crowdsourcing (SCS), they were able to secure funding from 26 individual funders to develop a Community Air Pollution Monitoring Map and Equipment library. With this they were able to purchase more sensors, which further supported communities in mapping air quality.