Outfall Safari

January 2020 Workshop

We held a workshop with citizen scientists, project managers and other stakeholders involved in Outfall Safari to investigate the impacts of Outfall Safari on: economy, society, environment, governance and science & technology. The workshop highlighted the complexity of the term ‘impact’ in relation to citizen science activities, and the fact that impact can occur at different levels and over different timescales. The following key take home sentences were produced by the attendees at the workshop:  

  • “Outfall Safari contributes to the ECONOMY by identifying problems early before the solution becomes more expensive, via cheap labour, although the reduction of economic costs is not a primary motive for the volunteers”  
  • “SOCIETY is divided; some are interested and motivated to take action, some are disconnected – the key is to connect the “bubbles” and networking to generate real impact” 
  • “Citizen science provides an opportunity to fill the evidence gap which enables a positive action on policy, GOVERNANCE, and the redirection of resources to tackling the issue”  
  • “We learnt about pollution in our rivers and this is an environmental concern, however, the action of collecting data does not immediately impact the ENVIRONMENT, learning about how the data is used from our [citizen] involvement to improve the environment is important” 
  • “Citizen science provides the opportunity to collect scientific data over large spatial and temporal scales supporting SCIENTIFIC discovery and TECHNOLOGY development 

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 824711.

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