Mission, Vision & Partners

The Boston Area City Nature Challenge (CNC) is a collaborative project. Learn more about our effort below.


By building scientific knowledge and literacy, the CNC Boston Area envisions a community that understands the importance of biodiversity and healthy environments, can respond to and monitor a changing environment, and feels empowered to contribute to civic decisions.

2018 Boston Area Goals

  1. Get more people involved in biodiversity awareness by doubling the amount of participants from 262 in 2017 to 500 in 2018.

  2. Achieve more observations with a higher percentage of “research grade” observations. In 2017, 1,900 of our 3,945 observations, or 48%, were research grade. This year, we  hope to have 8,000 observations with at least 50% of the observations being “research grade” quality.

  3. Encourage more observations of invertebrates. Last year, 97 participants observed 215 species of invertebrates. This year, we'd like to have more than 190 of our observers recording invertebrates.

  4. Be able to investigate changes in biodiversity along the urban to rural gradient as a result of the data collected in the 2018 CNC. Our Data Quests will help us achieve this goal.

CNC Boston Area Steering Committee

Earthwatch Institute
Encyclopedia of Life
Environmental Studies Program Brandeis University
Mass Audubon
MIT Senseable City Lab
New England Ocean Science Education Collaborative
University of Massachusetts Boston
Zoo New England

CNC Boston Area Partners

Boston Greenovate
Boston Harbor Cruises
Boston Harbor Islands National & State Park
Bridgewater State University
Cambridge Wildlife Puppetry Project
Charles River Watershed Association
City of Malden
City of Medford
City of Somerville
Earthwise Aware
Emerald Necklace Conservancy
Fresh Pond Reservation
Friends of the Malden River
Harvard Forest
Mass Audubon’s Boston Nature Center
MA Office of Coastal Zone Management
Medford High School
Mount Auburn Cemetery
Mystic River Watershed Association
National Park Service
New England Aquarium - Live Blue Service Corps and Community Programs
Ocean Bay Girl Scouts
Pare Corporation
Quincy Park Dept. Environmental Treasures Program
Rose Kennedy Greenway
Salem Maritime and Saugus Iron Works National Historic Sites
Salem Sound Coastwatch
Stonehill College
The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University
The Trustees of Reservations
US EPA New England Regional Laboratory
US Fish & Wildlife Service/Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge
Walden Woods Project
Wellesley College
Wright Farm