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Collaborating with national organisations to extend online citizen science

Female lab assistant with petri dish

A project which allows members of the public to engage with scientific research, has just received further funding.

EDUcating Citizens and organisations in Citizen Science methodologies (EduCS), part of nQuire, an Open University (OU) citizen inquiry platform, has just been awarded £20,000 from the UK Research and Innovation’s (UKRI) £400,000 pathfinder funding.

The project aims to engage more with organisations such as the BBC and the Met Office, who have the capacity to reach huge audiences so that they can involve them in citizen science activities.

The vision of the project is to empower citizens in determining their own research agendas and educate them in scientific thinking, through engagement with a dynamic technological tool (nQuire.org.uk) and workshops with scientists and national organisations.

Dr Christothea Herodotou, Senior Lecturer in the OU’s Institute of Educational Technology, said:

“EduCS is a pilot project that will identify how best to use citizen science methodologies in organisations such as the BBC and the Met Office that have the potential to reach thousands of people and allow them to take part in citizen science projects. Such activities can help citizens experience and understand the value of science and bring direct impact to their lives in the long-term.”

Tom Saunders, Head of Public Engagement, UKRI said:

“This is one of 53 pilot projects that we have funded, all using excitingways that researchers and innovators can involve the public in their work. In 2020 and beyond, we will build on the lessons we learn through funding these pilot projects to helpour ambition of making research and innovation responsive to the knowledge, priorities and values of society and open to participation by people from all backgrounds.”

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