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The Science of Citizen Science

The Science of Citizen Science

The involvement of citizens into scientific endeavors is expected to contribute to solve the big challenges of our time, such as climate change and the loss of biodiversity, growing inequalities within and between societies, and the sustainability turn.

This is one of the main outcome of the book The Science of Citizen Science, recently published on the 12th of January 2021, and concluding four years of intensive exchange within a dedicated European research network on citizen science (COST).

The field of citizen science has been growing in recent decades. Many different stakeholders from scientists to citizens and from policy makers to environmental organisations have been involved in its practice. In addition, many scientists also study citizen science as a research approach and as a way for science and society to interact and collaborate. "The Science of Citizen Science" provides a representation of the practices as well as scientific and societal outcomes in different disciplines, reflecting the contribution of citizen science to societal development, education, or innovation and provides and overview of the field of actors as well as on tools and guidelines. 

JRC scientists contributed to four dedicated chapters addressing the following topics

  •  What Is Citizen Science? The Challenges of Definition
  •  Citizen Science in Europe 
  •  A Conceptual Model for Participants and Activities in Citizen 
  •  Citizen Science and Policy

"It signals a beginning, as its curriculum-like structure gives universities and others the opportunity to reflect on both the substantive contributions to research and the societal added value of Citizen Science," says Dr. Katrin Vohland, Director General of the Natural History Museum Vienna and first editor of the book.

This book, with contributions from 100 author, addresses the strengths and barriers that are relevant to fulfil the many expectations of citizen science. It is a culmination of the work of the COST (Cooperation in Science and Technology in Europe) Action, "Citizen Science to promote creativity, scientific literacy, and innovation throughout Europe". As part of this activity scientists, practitioners, and representatives of key organisations have discussed various issues related to Citizen Science.

Learn more: Open Access Publication: The Science of Citizen Science by Springer

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The 30-months project will push the Next Generation Internet a step further by providing cascade funding to EU-based researchers and innovators in carrying out Next Generation Internet related experiments in collaboration with US research teams.

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