Citizen Science for Policy across Europe

22 June 2021 at 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM CEST


EU-Citizen.Science invited representatives from ministries across Europe and at the regional and local levels to engage in a discussion about citizen science and its benefits for policy making. The main aim of this event was to develop collaborations among policy makers with citizen science interests. This event was held as a satellite event of the European Research and Innovation Days on 22 June 2021.


  • Explore the current state of citizen science in Europe to enhance synergies across borders.
  • Open discussions by presenting good practices and success stories about citizen science operating at different levels, highlighting the barriers that affect the development of citizen science and providing solutions to overcome them to produce a powerful policy decision making tool.
  • Foster collaborations among different countries to promote citizen science, establishing common paths.

How to see the recorded event


The event lasted 1.5 hour. It was made up of four blocks, each dedicated to a citizen science topic. Each block began with a presentation given by an invited speaker, followed by an open discussion for sharing different experiences from representatives of Ministries of European Member States and the participants in the event.

  • 11:00 - 11:05 Welcoming and introduction to the event by the EU-Citizen.Science Project coordinator and FECYT/Ibercivis (5’)
  • 11:05 - 11:25 Block 1: Current state of citizen science across Europe introduced by Sven Schade, Scientific Policy Officer, Joint Research Center, European Commission (5’), followed by a discussion (15’)
  • 11:25 - 11:45 Block 2: Promoting citizen science through the launch of national plans for funding citizen science projects introduced by Carmen Castresana, General Director of Research Planning, Spanish Ministry of Science and innovation (5’), followed by a discussion (15’)
  • 11:45 - 12:05 Block 3: Overcoming the barriers to citizen science introduced by José Paulo Esperança, Vice-President of the Foundation for Science and Technology, Portuguese Ministry of Science and Technology and Higher Education (5’), followed by a discussion (15’)
  • 12:05 - 12:25 Block 4: Science for the people, by the people – policy instruments to anchor citizen science in research and society introduced by Anne Overbeck, Policy Officer for Citizen Science, German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (5’), followed by a discussion (15’)
  • 12:25 - 12.30 Concluding remarks (5’)

Invited Speakers

Sven Schade

He works at the European Commission’s in-house scientific and knowledge management service, the Joint Research Centre (JRC), where he leads the research on digital transformation and the modernisation of the public sector for recovery. His research interests include digital governance, multi-disciplinary interoperability, and public participation in science for policy.

Carmen Castresana

Dr. Carmen Castresana is Director General for Research Planning at the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation since February 2020. She is Full Professor at the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) and has developed most of her research career in the field of Plant Molecular Biology at the National Center for Biotechnology, where she acted as Director from 2013 to 2015.

José Paulo Esperança

José Paulo Esperança is the Vice President of the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT). He is full professor of Finance and former Dean of the ISCTE Business School as well as former Pro-Rector for International Relations and Entrepreneurship at ISCTE-IUL. He cofounded AUDAX-ISCTE, an associated centre focused on entrepreneurship and family business and BGI, a new ventures accelerator. He is an associated member of several associations aimed at promoting biodiversity in his home region of Beira Interior.

Anne Overbeck

Anne Overbeck is Policy Officer at the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research focusing on Citizen Science and other participatory approaches in science and research. Prior to her position at the ministry, Anne Overbeck has been working as a museum curator concentrating on participation in the knowledge creation process in (digital) exhibitions.

Invited Panelists

Svetlana Jesiļevska

Dr. oec. Svetlana Jesiļevska is an expert in smart energy at the Latvian Ministry of Education and Science, the author of several scientific publications, books and publications in the mass-media devoted to innovation and R&D. Work experience as data analyst in the Central Statistical Bureau and the State Chancellery of Latvia.

Luigi Ceccaroni

Luigi manages innovation and strategic research at Earthwatch, an independent research organisation in Oxford, UK. He is the principal investigator and leader of the European Commission’s project “MICS” (2019-2021) to evaluate citizen-science impacts. He also leads the awareness raising and engagement efforts in EU-Citizen.Science. Luigi is the author of more than 100 publications on citizen science, the environment, artificial intelligence and personalised medicine, topics he is passionate about. He was the vice-chair of the European Citizen Science Association in 2019-2020.

Adrian Pascu

Mr. Adrian Pascu works at the Ministry of Research, Innovation and Digitalization in Romania, as a policy officer preparing the participation to the EU Council meetings in research and to the ERAC. He has a relevant experience in the development of ERA in Romania and in the participation to the EU R&I framework programmes, as well as in related supporting activities.

Stela Derivolcov

She works as Associate Statistician at UNECE, Statistical Division, Environment and Multi-Domain Statistics Section, responsible for SDGs area. Secretary of CES Steering Group on Statistics for SDGs its 3 task teams on capacity development, communication and data transmission. Prior to joining UNECE, worked at the National Bureau of Statistics of Moldova.

Jose Miguel Rubio Iglesias

Jose Miguel Rubio Iglesias works as a geospatial data manager at the European Environment Agency since 2017. Since 2018 he is the co-chair of the EPA Network Interest Group on Citizen Science, a group of representatives of European Environmental Protection Agencies working with or interested in citizen science activities for environmental monitoring. He has been involved in the drafting of the European Commission’s Best Practices in Citizen Science for Environmental monitoring as well as in several articles related to citizen science and environmental policies.

Silke Voigt-Heucke

Silke joined the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin in 2018, where she is currently in charge of developing a Citizen Science Competence Center. She is the project coordinator for the EU Citizen.Science project and was responsible for organizing the Citizen Science SDG Conference held in October 2020 as part of the German EU Presidency.

Claudia Iasillo

Claudia Iasillo works as project manager in APRE (Agency for Promotion of European Research) since 2018. She holds a PhD in Molecular Biology and afterwards she started working on science communication and public engagement in science activities. In APRE she focuses on projects on science and society relationship, including science communication, citizen science, stakeholder and public engagement, community building and capacity building. Currently she is in the coordinating team of TIME4CS, an H2020 project that aims at facilitating a way in which the scientific ecosystem could better take societal views into consideration by supporting Research Performing Organisations in defining and implementing institutional changes that can lead to a better and more effective engagement of citizens in research and innovation.

Igno Notermans

Igno Notermans works for DRIFT (Dutch Research Institute For Transitions) as an action researcher and advisor. He has transition expertise on themes such as energy, participation, and behaviour. For the ACTION project he organizes and facilitates policy masterclasses throughout Europe, each aimed at mainstreaming citizen science in policy.

Aurelija Povilaikė

Aurelija Povilaike works as a National Contact Point (NCP) for Lithuanian Research Council, and is responsible for Widening participation and ERA, ERC programmes in Horizon Europe. Previously, Aurelija was developing research policy and management strategies at the UK universities. In her capacity as NCP, she is informing the research community about the key policies related to framework programmes, such as, of citizen science.

Cecilia Cabello

Cecilia Cabello is the Director of Operations at FECYT. She has a degree in Food Science and Technology from Michigan State University and a Master's degree in Science, Technology and Society from Universidad Autonoma de Madrid (UAM). Since 2002 she has developed her professional career at FECYT managing and supervising several departments in the areas of science outreach and communication, R&D metrics and indicators, scientific information management, open science, researchers’ career development and mobility, science diplomacy, international projects and support to the internationalization of science.

Linden Farrer

Linden Farrer is Policy Officer in the DG Research & Innovation “Open Science” unit, where he is involved in mainstreaming Responsible Research Innovation and developing citizen science policy. Before joining the Commission, he worked on research projects for civil society in Brussels, and for local government in England on employment and skills. His background is in the social sciences and humanities.

Daen Smits

Daen is a policy officer and works for the ministry of Education, Culture and Science of the Netherlands. He is involved in the National Programme on Open Science (NPOS). In NPOS, the science community of the Netherlands aims to accelerate the transition towards Open Access, FAIR Data and Citizen Science.

Marjan van Meerlo

In 2017, Marjan started as a Second National Expert in environmental observation within DG Research and Innovation - European Commission, after fulfilling positions in several ministries in the Netherlands. She is involved in files related to the Group on Earth Observations, EuroGEO and Horizon 2020/Horizon Europe, with a particular interest in citizen observations.

General Information


  • The EU-Citizen.Science project and FECYT/Ibercivis with the support of
    • The European Commission
    • The Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation
    • The Portuguese Ministry of Science and Technology and Higher Education
    • The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research


  • EU-Citizen.Science Project Coordinator
  • Ibercivis
  • Stickydot

Organization Team

  • Antonella Radicchi (MfN)
  • Silke Voigt-Heucke (MfN)
  • Francisco Sanz (Ibercivis)
  • Daniel Lisbona (Ibercivis)
  • Maite Pelacho (Ibercivis)
  • Pablo Camacho (FECYT)
  • Maria Inês Vicente (Município de Figueira de Castelo Rodrigo - Portugal, Leiden University - The Netherlands)
  • Lucie Steigleder (Ecsite)
  • Claudia Fabo Cartas (ECSA)
  • Andrea Troncoso (ECSA)
  • with the support of the EU-Citizen.Science Consortium
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