The more open science becomes, the more opportunity there is for society to participate and share in the scientific process. The term citizen science covers a whole range of practices that try to enable just that. Opening up the ivory tower to participation from other disciplines, communities and members of the public has the potential to enrich our culture, boost research, and democratise science.

Science for all, and all for science!

For 3 days, 19-21st May, around 250 international academics, scientists, project leaders and policy makers will gather in Berlin at the Kulturbrauerei for the first conference of the European Citizen Science Association (ECSA) Citizen Science: Innovation in Open Science, Society and Policy. They will share stories and strategies for engagement, develop best practices, make plans, discuss funding opportunities and policies to support the development of citizen science in Europe. This is your invitation to connect with this community, get inspired, find out about existing citizen science projects, share your own projects, experience and perspective, and help shape future endeavours.

For local Berlin citizen scientists – science hackers, kitchen biologists, amateur astronomers, open hardware experts, makers, SciArtists and all manner of enthusiasts – there will be 2 opportunities to take part in this event free of charge.

Citizen Science Disco – Friday 20th May, 7PM – late

This will be an open social shindig of an evening for connecting communities – conference participants will be kicking back after 2 full days of conference and the invitation for an evening of science fun will be extended to the local Berlin community.

We have a line-up of inspiring lightning talks from the grassroots front-line of citizen science, representing both the local Berlin DIY science/maker/art scene, and international projects, followed by the chance to mingle and make new friends. There will some snacks, a cash bar and music.


Citizen Science ThinkCamp Saturday 21st May, 11AM – 4PM

With so many inspirational examples of Citizen Science in action across many fields, plenty of emerging hardware and software tools that offer flexibility as well as fresh solutions, and a range of juicy challenges just waiting to be tackled – all the right elements are in place at the first ECSA Conference for a Citizen Science ThinkCamp.

The ThinkCamp is an “unconference” style event-within-the-event, to which the local Berlin grassroots science & maker communities are invited to collaborate together with Conference attendees on a number of Citizen Science Challenges:

1. The ECSA Inclusiveness Challenge – How can we make ECSA a more inclusive organisation?

2. The WeCureALZ ‘Engaging Diversity’ Challenge – Help us design unique & effective strategies to engage and retain diverse communities.

3. The CitSci Communities of Europe Challenge – Mapping the citizen science communities of Europe: how and why should we do this?

4. The Overleaf Collaborative Writing Challenge – How can Overleaf support collaborative writing between academics and citizen scientists?

5. The Museum Data Visualisation Challenge – How can the visualisation of observation data gathered in the field be made more engaging and dynamic for participants?

6. The ‘CitSci for Health’ Challenge – What Citizen Science projects become possible with the health facilities geo data being mapped on the platform?

7. The Motion-sensing Camera Trap Challenge – Help us to design and build a DIY Camera Trap for Citizen Scientists around the World.

8. YOUR Citizen Science Challenge – Would YOU like to pose a Challenge at the ThinkCamp? We’ll have paper and pens ready for you to pitch your Challenge on the day, and kick-off a new discussion!

The style is similar to a World Cafe, with an emphasis on providing an open and creative environment for working together on new ideas, Citizen Science projects, and technology platforms.

You are invited to join us in the Kesselhaus throughout the day, to move freely between the different challenge discussion tables, as well as between the ThinkCamp and the Panel Sessions in the neighbouring Palais (a.k.a. ‘The law of 2 feet’).

It’s a great opportunity to work together with people with different perspectives, skills, and expertise – not to mention getting fresh inspiration, meeting potential new collaborators, and even getting involved in exciting new projects!


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