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Reflecting on deepening participation in recruitment and evaluation in citizen science - lessons from the WeCount project

Sardo, Margarida; Fogg Rogers, Laura; Laggan, Sophie


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Dr Laura Fogg Rogers
Associate Professor of Knowledge Exchange in Engineering

Sophie Laggan


This paper shares learnings from the evaluation of the WeCount urban mobility citizen science project, in which citizens participated in several ways, from technical development to engagement and evaluation. Drawing on asset-based community development, the WeCount project aimed to empower citizens to take a leading role in the production of data, evidence, and knowledge around mobility in their neighbourhoods.
Citizens’ input to the design of the sensor and project workshops resulted in a citizen science model for urban mobility that could be refined for deployment in other cultures and contexts. However, citizen science projects would benefit from involving citizens in the evaluation process from the outset, for example identifying priorities and evaluation questions, as well as in developing a theory of change that would define the training and skills needed to support citizens in their evaluation journey. They would also benefit from financially compensating citizen evaluators and community champions who can amplify the voice of underrepresented groups. The next step is for citizen science projects to take on board these lessons, observing whether empowerment through not only knowledge and tools for collective action, but the finances to participate, leads to a more equitable seat at the decision-making table.

Presentation Conference Type Conference Paper (unpublished)
Conference Name PCST 2023
Start Date Apr 12, 2023
End Date Apr 14, 2023
Deposit Date Jul 24, 2023
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