D4.5 The accreditation discussion paper

Created March 13, 2023, 1:41 p.m.
Updated May 24, 2023, 3:38 p.m.

CS Track is a research and innovation project funded by the European Commission under the Science with and for Society (SwafS) programme. It began in December 2019 and brought together 9 partners from 7 countries in an effort to gather and share information about citizen science activities. It observed and carried out analyses on a significant number of different citizen science activities in order to increase knowledge about what makes such activities successful. Furthermore, it shared this knowledge with the wider citizen science community through publications, events, and other means.

This deliverable discusses the topic of accreditation in Citizen Science (CS) as it stands and highlights the potential for developing it in the future. The topic was suggested in the preparation stage of CS Track's proposal as a result of discussions about CS and its relation to education, measuring the quality of CS projects, and the value it returns to participants, as well as a desire to create policy recommendations in this sense. We aim to present issues related to accreditation in CS and describe their manifestations during the three years of our project's work. We refer to the way in which we initially stated our intentions vis-à-vis accreditation in the project's description of work (section 2), followed by an in-depth literature review (section 3), a synthesis and positioning of accreditation in the field of CS (section 4), and an account of accreditation-related findings in CS Track (section 5). Finally (section 6), we address the ways to incorporate accreditation in CS policy and suggest policy recommendations based on our work. An annex closes this deliverable, presenting (mainly through screenshots of web pages) a few examples of existing accreditation providers, based on the literature review conducted and an internet search. The accreditation topic has not been extensively studied in the context of CS and thus its connection to the work conducted in CS Track has remained somewhat open-ended in some cases, inviting debate and further analysis. However, this also provides an opportunity to discuss accreditation from a fresh perspective, free from discipline-related preconceptions. Therefore, this discussion paper serves as an exploration of what accreditation means or can mean in CS, for whom it may be beneficial, and who is or should be responsible for accreditation-related practices.

Publish information

DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.7446899

Links with projects and/or organisations

CS Track
June 21, 2021, 3:50 p.m.
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