Browse all Publications

Filter by keyword: Citizen science

Publications including this keyword are listed below.

Mar 19, 2023 Article
Citizen science and participatory science communication: an empirically informed discussion connecting research and theory

by Paolo Giardullo, Federico Neresini, Esther Marín-González, Cristina Luís, Joana Magalhães and Rosa Arias

Citizen Science is believed to contribute significantly to the democratisation of science, engaging non-scientists in scientific research. Participatory approaches to science communication share the same interest through public participation and public engagement. In the attempt to connect these two debates both theoretically and empirically, we provide an analysis of the communication tools and strategies used by 157 Citizen Science projects across the EU, UK, and Switzerland. Our analysis reports that the CS projects surveyed tend to interpret communication as a disseminating activity, rather than as a tool to promote appropriate communication-based encounters with both project participants and other potential target audiences.

Volume 22 • Issue 2 • 2023

Jan 24, 2023 Article
Science knowledge and trust in science in biodiversity citizen science projects

by Baptiste Bedessem, Anne Dozières, Anne-Caroline Prévot and Romain Julliard

Citizen science projects are valued for their impact on participants' knowledge, attitude and behavior towards science. In this paper, we explore how participation in biodiversity citizen science projects is correlated to different dimensions of trust in science. We conduct a quantitative study through an online survey of 1,199 individuals, 586 of them being part of a biodiversity citizen science program in France. Our results suggest that participation-related trust is more exhaustive — it covers more dimensions of the scientific endeavor — than education-related trust. This exploratory study calls for more empirical research on the links between citizen science and the different dimensions of public trust in science.

Volume 22 • Issue 01 • 2023

Nov 13, 2022 Article
Exploring scientists’ perceptions of citizen science for public engagement with science

by Stephanie A. Collins, Miriam Sullivan and Heather J. Bray

It is often assumed that citizen science is inherently participatory in nature. However, citizen science projects exist along a continuum from data contribution to full co-creation. We invited 19 biologists to explore their conceptions of citizen science. Almost all participants defined citizen science as involving non-scientists in data collection. This definition acted as a barrier for scientists who did not see how citizen science could suit their research objectives. While interviewees perceived many societal and experiential benefits of contributory citizen science, deliberate design is needed to realise the full potential of citizen science for public engagement.

Volume 21 • Issue 07 • 2022

Nov 06, 2022 Commentary
Citizen science communication and engagement: a growing concern for researchers and practitioners

by Susanne Hecker

Anniversaries provide great opportunities to celebrate achievements, to look into the future, and to do some self-reflection. I have the honour of doing so in a specific field of science communication that I’m familiar with: the field of citizen science communication, especially with a European focus. I hope this commentary prompts others who are experts in their regions of the world to also reflect on the past and the future for this growing field.

Volume 21 • Issue 07 • 2022

Aug 23, 2022 Conference Review
Engaging communities in citizen science

by Cathrine Winther

How can citizen science (CS) be engaging? What does engagement entail? Who needs to be engaged? What are the challenges and opportunities of engagement in CS? After two years of lockdown and isolation, these were some of the questions debated by engaged researchers, students, and practitioners at the ‘Engaging Citizen Science Conference 2022’, (CitSci2022), held April 25th–26th at Aarhus University, Denmark. The conference aimed to showcase and share knowledge, ideas, and innovations on engaging citizens in scientific processes to secure the field of citizen science to thrive and expand. Nearly 250 participants, mainly from Europe, participated in an extensive programme with various session formats that provided an interactive and inspirational space for presenting and negotiating experiences, challenges, and enthusiasm for CS. This review presents highlights from the event and some reflections from the reviewer, including thoughts on what engagement means, and concluding with focus points that practitioners, researchers, and students may consider when engaging citizens in science and organizing similar events in future.

Volume 21 • Issue 05 • 2022

Jun 09, 2022 Article
A methodological approach to co-design citizen science communication strategies directed to quadruple-helix stakeholders

by Joana Magalhães, Blanca Guasch, Rosa Arias, Paolo Giardullo, Ana Elorza, Inês Navalhas, Esther Marín-González, Marzia Mazzonetto and Cristina Luís

Citizen Science (CS) can help change the paradigm of science communication. To test this, 38 ongoing CS projects from Italy, Portugal and Spain have been selected by the H2020 NEWSERA project to act as pilots in the development of communication strategies, specifically targeting stakeholders in the quadruple helix. The projects, together with stakeholder representatives and science communication and journalism professionals participated in a series of workshops — #CitSciComm Labs — where communication strategies were co-designed, using adapted design-thinking methods. The innovative methodological approach is hereby presented and can be an inspiration for others willing to implement improved communication strategies to target different stakeholders.

Volume 21 • Issue 04 • 2022 • Special Issue: Responsible science communication across the globe

Mar 27, 2022 Practice Insight
Including younger children in science-related issues using participatory and collaborative strategies: a pilot project on urban biodiversity

by Rita Campos

Young children are actors usually excluded from political decisions and also from many science communication projects. Participatory science communication models can help to connect their everyday life with both local policies and science-related content. Using visual methodologies for engagement, we aimed at understanding what preschool children prefer in the city landscape. Results show how young children envision a “better city” and how that construction might defy current scientific knowledge. It further illustrates how science communication can be used to co-produce new knowledge, contributing to the debate about people's needs and perceptions related to science-based options.

Volume 21 • Issue 02 • 2022 • Special Issue Participatory science communication for transformation (PCST2020+1)

Mar 27, 2022 Practice Insight
Participatory citizen science in solar energy research: going beyond data collection to promote the energy transition

by Luisa Barbosa, Carlos del Cañizo and Gema Revuelta

Despite the societal relevance of energy research, there is a distinct lack of citizen science initiatives in the field. This paper reports the experience of a participatory and innovative strategy to develop a citizen science initiative for solar energy research. A number of stakeholders participated in the definition and implementation of the initiative, and tools such as surveys and a hackathon were employed. The process described aims to provide a blueprint for transforming the relationship between citizens and research into societal challenges. Here we describe the collaborative process and analyse the main opportunities, limitations and future perspectives.

Volume 21 • Issue 02 • 2022 • Special Issue Participatory science communication for transformation (PCST2020+1)

Mar 13, 2022 Article
Deconstructing citizen science: a framework on communication and interaction using the concept of roles

by Susanne Hecker and Monika Taddicken

Citizen science opens the scientific knowledge production process to societal actors. In this novel collaboration process, scientists and citizens alike face the challenge of new tasks and functions, eventually resulting in changing roles. Role theory provides a way of conceptualizing the roles that people take in communication and interaction. We use role theory to create a framework that identifies scientists' and citizens' tasks in citizen science projects, main aims of communication, spaces they interact in, and their roles — thus providing a structured way to capture communication and interaction in and about CS for further scientific reflection and practical application.

Volume 21 • Issue 01 • 2022

Feb 13, 2022 Practice Insight
Nuestros Suelos: exploring new forms of public engagement with polluted soils

by Sebastian Ureta, Miriam Llona, Delia Rodríguez-Oroz, Daniel Valenzuela, Carolina Trujillo-Espinoza, Consuelo Guiñez, Alejandro Rebolledo, María José Maiza and Camilo Rodríguez Beltrán

Despite being a critical environmental problem, soil pollution is not usually considered as a relevant issue by the general public. This disinterest derives from traditional procedures to assess soil pollution that are quite complex and costly, not considering any form of citizen involvement. Seeking to challenge this situation, the project “Nuestros Suelos” (Our Soil) aimed at designing and testing a low-cost participative soil pollution assessment toolkit. The final prototype included several participative modules, going from an assessment of the history of local soils to measuring heavy metals such as Arsenic and Copper. Tested with low-income communities in northern Chile, the toolkit was able not only to produce multiple kinds of data but also a public that started to understand and care about the issue.

Volume 21 • Issue 01 • 2022