Opening up science for all! coming to Birmingham

You’re invited to a one-day workshop on Monday, 25th June 2018 at The Studio in Birmingham to collaboratively build on and challenge existing plans for a national community around participatory public engagement, citizen science and environmental research. This Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)-funded Stage 1 Engaging Environments consortium-and capacity-building project is led by the Opening up science for all! team who want to collaborate with you to draft a shared vision, mission and set of activities that will create a step-change in how people interact with and encounter environmental research. This shared vision will form the basis for a second funding application to NERC’s Engaging Environments Call to be announced in October.

This one-day interactive meeting is for individuals and organisations involved in 1 or all of the following: (a) participatory forms of public engagement; (b) audience engagement and interaction; (c) environmental research; and (d) citizen science. Note we hope to attract participants from a range of backgrounds, disciplines, interests.

Please read the brief description below and then sign-up using this form by 1200 on Monday 4th June. We have 80-100 places for this one-day event. If we are over-subscribed, we will consider each application to ensure wide representation and hope to confirm places soon after this date. If you have any questions, please contact:


Brief description

Through Opening up science for all!, we want to move beyond passive forms of engagement ‘talking at’ people towards individuals and communities developing active and on-going involvement in environmental research at all stages of the process through citizen science. We invite participants to join us on 25th June to work on specific tasks to challenge or build on our existing vision for this community and its activities around participatory public engagement and citizen science in the UK.

Based upon responses to a national survey, three initial workshops, and evaluation from the wider Open up science for all! Project, our work on the 25th June will relate to:

  • Disruption and risk-taking: identifying disruptive practices to (a) challenge negative or out-dated individual/organisational assumptions and perceptions around participatory forms of public engagement (esp. citizen science), (b) introduce new disciplines and forms of knowledge and expertise, and (c) accommodate new participants that have not yet been involved in citizen science around environmental research
  • Communication and networking: developing traditional and innovative online and face-to-face communicative tools and techniques to facilitate (a) greater cross-disciplinary learning and training on participatory forms of public engagement, (b) improved access to shared assets such as best practice, and (c) fast track networking and the brokerage of existing and new relationships around citizen science.
  • Collaboration and sharing: exploring current and potential forms of collaboration between individuals and organisations in order to (a) share best practice and success stories, (b) facilitate new collaborative endeavours, (c) extend beyond contributory to collaborative and more co-created forms of citizen science
  • Innovation and horizon-scanning: maintaining a critical eye on contemporary practice to collectively develop existing and new forms of participatory public engagement, as well as embedding ways of thinking, being and doing from beyond traditional science engagement endeavours. In particular, this relates to how environmental research and knowledge is used by a range of different people, and how people’s different relationships to and knowledge of the natural environment are valued
  • Championing and advocacy: designing processes and structures to support and expand the profile of citizen science in the UK in relation to exciting combinations of academic science, policy and evidence, engagement practice, and public involvement, as well as challenging and co-creating new forms of participatory research and science