Citizen science, interesting for municipalities too!
Citizen science is scientific research carried out in whole or in part by citizens, often in cooperation with or under the guidance of professional scientists. Think of Curieuzeneuzen (air quality measurements), Telraam (traffic counts) and other initiatives. Citizen science projects are set up to collect and analyse large quantities of data in a short period of time and to address social challenges, such as mobility or environmental issues.
Citizen science projects offer many opportunities for local governments: they can provide policy relevant data, they allow to create awareness and support for important social issues and they strengthen the bond between government and citizens. However, there are also challenges in setting up and implementing citizen science initiatives: to what extent is the data collected by citizens reliable? Or what about the privacy of participants?
First citizen science roadmap for local governments
In order to support local governments in citizen science, IDEA Consult has developed a hands-on manual. The manual provides tools to set up successful collaborations or to start initiatives. The manual informs, motivates and inspires to use citizen science in the different phases of the policy cycle.
The different chapters also include videos and examples of projects and pioneers who are at work in Flanders.
The roadmap was developed in close cooperation with the 13 centre cities, 4 connecting cities and municipalities (Aalter, Halle, Harelbeke, Zoersel), VVSG, the Knowledge Centre for Flemish Cities and the Scivil citizen science network.
The development of the roadmap is part of the Smart Flanders programme and was commissioned by the Domestic Administration Agency of the Flemish Government.
The roadmap can be consulted and downloaded via this link https://www.scivil.be/nieuws/draaiboek-citizen-science-voor-lokale-besturen.