By Igno Notermans – DRIFT

Curious to read our recommendations to mainstream citizen science? A preview!

During the final policy masterclass at the end of the final combined events of ACTION and we presented the recommendations to mainstream citizen science. These recommendations have been developed through an iterative and co-creative process of our national policy masterclass in Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain (Barcelona area) and the UK. This process involved more than 110 policymakers, policy workers, citizen science actors, and scientists in five national masterclasses on citizen science, one in each of the five European countries. 

These general recommendations are based on the themes that emerged from the recommendations across the five countries. They aim at the broader policy ecosystem within which citizen science initiatives are embedded, and are specifically for policymakers, policy workers, citizen science actors, and scientists. The six recommendations are categorized in three main themes: ensuring a healthy citizen science ecosystem, integrating citizen science in policy, and creating collaboration between citizen science and policy.

In January 2022 we will publish a more extended version of these general six recommendations along with specific recommendations for the five European countries. Follow our website and socials to get this publication. For now, please find the highlights of the six recommendations to mainstream citizen science below, the order of the recommendations does not indicate any hierarchy between them:

  1. Fund citizen science in the science system: Fund citizen science with the goal to mainstream citizen science as a scientific method.
  2. Set up national/regional citizen science networks: Set up national/regional citizen science networks or platforms to connect citizen science actors and facilitate knowledge exchange.
  3. Promote citizen science as relevant for policy: Promote and create awareness of how citizen science can be used in policy to convince policymakers to adopt citizen science.
  4. Establish an open data platform: Establish an open data platform to share and integrate citizen science data to inform policy and establish it as a legitimate policy mechanism.
  5. Take time for co-creation: Take time to co-create shared goals, expectations, and standards when using citizen science in policy to allow for co-ownership & alignment of efforts.
  6. Develop a local platform for exchange: Develop a local platform to connect policymakers with citizen science actors and other stakeholders to exchange questions, initiatives & needs.