ECSA General Assembly 2016 in Berlin

On the second day of the 1st international ECSA conference, the ECSA invites all members, supporters and interested guests to take part in the ECSA General Assembly 2016. After a brief look at what we achieved so far, we will move on to decisions determining the future of the association. We will hold elections for the new ECSA Executive Board and Board of Directors as well as to complete the Advisory Board. New working groups will also be formed. 

Participation in the ECSA General Assembly is free of charge. We kindly ask you register using the conference webpage and registration system here. Should you want to participate only in the General Assembly and not in any other part of the international conference, you'll get a free ticket through the conference system.

Please note that only ECSA members have a right to vote in the General Assembly. Supporters and guests are welcome to attend.


The premliminary agenda of the 2016 General Assembly includes the following topics:


We look forward to seeing you all!


Applications received for the Executive Board (ECSA Chair and Vice Chair) so far:

  • Katrin Vohland, Director Research Programme Public Engagement with Science at Museum für Naturkunde (Museum of Natural History) in Berlin

Motivation: Citizen Science for me proves to be one important entry point for so many members of different societal groups and communities in order to contribute to scientific progress and to discuss the meaning of science beyond the concrete output. I love to see these interactions growing, I enjoy having contact to so many engaged persons from different countries, and I also highly value the idea of Europe as a civic community acting sustainably. The Museum für Naturkunde Berlin where I am working in the scientific area of the science of communication already is a hub linking science and scientists, education, and public dialogue on pressing issues such as changing biodiversity, or geo-bio-human interactions generally, supporting and reflecting citizen science and its impact.

Vision: After two years of hard work together with many supporters from different institutions and countries, who together with us really were allocating time, ideas, and spirit, ECSA is now flourishing. We have gained some (financial) resources, we established some basic governance, communication systems, and work flows in order build a strong and reliable institution. I would like to serve ECSA for another two years as Executive Board member
in order to consolidate these first successes, to support ECSA becoming institutionally more independent, with broader inclusion of different groups and communities, visible in a geographically distributed secretariat and thematic hubs. I would like to make ECSA to a strong organization which welcomes and supports citizen science and research upon it, acts as a think tank for new approaches and experiments, sets standards for good practice, and shows the political and societal relevance of the citizen science approach for a Good Life.

More information:


Applications received for the Board of Directors so far:

  • Alon Itai, Head of Technion Citizen Science Project

Motivation: There are many citizen science projects. Each project collects data in isolation. I feel that sharing data between different research projects will allow Citizen Science to detect new unexpected connections and associations, for example, the connection between dietary data, air quality, and health of children that reside in the locations from which the air quality data is collected. This will have an important impact on the scientific community.

Vision: I wish to promote a platform that will allow researchers to collaborate and share data collected in different research projects. Every project will register to the platform which will collect the data in the cloud thus enabling the use of Big Data methods to analyze the data, discover new connections.

More information:  and

  • Aletta Bonn, Head of Department at Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research- UFZ / German Centre for integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle Jena Leipzig

Motivation: To promote ECSA and the further development of a vibrant CS community linked across Europe - and to our partners overseas. To guide and foster ECSA in making a difference to allow for sustained establishment of a CS culture in Europe - with innovations for science, society and policy.

Vision: To strategically move ECSA from the initial starting phase into a mainstreaming phase, that builds on and lives through the various CS networks and projects across Europe. To help provide the basis for the working groups to be able to shine and act as the main wheels of ECSA. To pass on the experience of organising the ECSA conference to the next conference partner and to distill the Berlin conference results for ECSA.

More information:

  • Luigi Ceccaroni, President and Research Lead at 1000001 Labs

Motivation: How can the board of directors drive change towards the achievement of greater civic competence, a greater role of citizen science in modern research and a better future? One way is by providing information to others and opening up opportunities for others to learn. This challenge has guided my career as an activist and professional, and today it brings me to (re)apply for the ECSA board of directors membership position. As research lead for the 1000001 Labs cooperative, I am in charge of driving citizen-science--related concerns into technology-centered local and international projects. It is a stimulating and at time arduous task, and my role is to actively support project consortia in their local and international efforts to address these challenges and subsequently strengthen the bridges between citizen science and technology. Deeply committed to alliance building, I have contributed to scale up the citizen-science discourse in predominantly technological arenas.

Vision: I would like ECSA to accomplish greater civic competence for all citizens, a greater role of citizen science in modern research and a better future. I would like to specifically support the part of the work program related to the creation of a participatory system to develop and share tools for citizen science. I would like to support the promotion of global and open technologies that could be used as channels to retrieve citizen-science data and provide information to citizens, researchers and decision makers. I would like to support the development of tools (e.g., an ontology), which will be maintained and expanded according to technological evolution and users’ demands, with the technological products stored in an open repository, in which participants may contribute their own tools (or adapting existing ones to new requirements).

More information:

  • Margaret Gold, Director & Co-Founder at The Mobile Collective and Director at Gold Mobile Innovation Ltd

Motivation: Although my background is in Innovation & New Product Development in the Technology Industry (primarily mobile & web), I have been deeply involved in Citizen Science for the past 3 years as a Consortium team member of the Citizen Cyberlab, and I am very keen to stay involved in this field. I am particularly passionate about hands-on STEM learning and the engagement of the young in real science and 'making', and see an exciting role for Citizen Science in both this, and in making a genuine impact on our world and society - particular in an era of rapid climate change.

Vision: In keeping with it's Mission to connect citizens and science through fostering active participation, I would be interested in focusing on the Communication & Engagement strategy in particular, with the clear goal of expanding beyond the current academic foundation of the ECSA, to involve the commercial sector and technology companies on the one hand, and the DIY, Maker & Hacker communities, and local citizens on the other hand.
I specifically see two opportunities for the ECSA. The first is to leverage the exciting emergence of accessible prototyping and programming tools that enable 'Extreme' Citizen Science in local communities and schools. And the second is to co-create Citizen Science projects in collaboration with target participants, who should ideally benefit directly from the outcomes of the project and the science.

More information: Margaret is a Mobile Industry veteran who is increasingly active in the emerging field of Citizen Science. For more than 15 years she has been working with entrepreneurs and inventors to launch new businesses, helping corporates to develop & launch innovative new products and services, and running creative collaboration events that apply technologies in new fields. She is probably best known for being one of the Organisers and Founders of Over the Air, the mobile industry’s most loved Hack Day. ( As Director and Co-Founder of The Mobile Collective, and Consortium Partner of the Citizen Cyberlab, Margaret has been running collaborative events such as ThinkCamps and Hack Days, and building engaged & active communities of participants in web & mobile-based Citizen Science projects. Margaret continues on as an Advisor to a number of start-ups she has helped to launch: • Visijax / Wearable Technologies Ltd (Wearable Tech) • 5-TILES Keyboard (Wearable Software) • Ether Books (Mobile App) Past start-ups include include Mobillcash (sold to Boku), Aditon (a PA Consulting Venture) and LUUP (a mobile payments service). Past client projects include launching the Mobile Application Centre at Imperial College and building Vodafone Betavine, a mobile developer community. Before focusing on the more entrepreneurial side of the equation, Margaret worked at Edengene - a boutique innovation consulting firm that helps FTSE100 companies to identify and develop new product & service opportunities and launch them to market. and

  • Andrea Sforzi, Director at Maremma Natural History Museum

Motivation: I believe that citizen science is an invaluable opportunity to engage people with science and to gather enormous amount of data that could hardly be collected otherwise. I had the fortune to follow from the very beginning the process of setting up our European network of institutions, researchers and practitioners engaged in citizen science. At the end of my first mandate as member of the Board of Directors, I believe that there are still many aspects to be tackled, taking advantage from my previuos experience. So I confirm my availability to keep on working for the further development of our community.

Vision: I strongly support the idea of helping this community grow and develop new ways of collaboration within and outside Europe. One of the main aims is the establishment of standards that could help experts and practitioners exchanging information, data, tools and technology. Another relevant goal is making the European citizens aware of the opportunity citizen science offers to everyone and work to reduce the large differences in terms of people engagement and participation still existing among different countries. A third aspect to bulid up in the next years will be the development of few European-wide projects, that could contribute to a deeper and more active collaboration among ECSA members, sharing practical as well as theoretical aspects.

More information: I am wildlife biologist, Director of the Maremma Natural History Museum in Grosseto (Italy). Since 2011 I developed citizen science activities. In this context, I activated at the Natural History Museum of the Maremma a recording website for the collection of wildlife sightings ( and organized several courses for citizen scientists on the identification of some selected species and bioblitzes, with the aim of engaging common people in the data recording of the natural environment. I’m one of the founders of the European Citizen Science Association (ECSA) and current member of the board of Directors (and Steering Committee). For a brief reference see: I did several presentations dealing with different aspects of citizen science and represented ECSA in different contests and countries. I’m currently acting as the contact person between ECSA and its Advisory Board. I’m among the organizers of the museum citizen science session at the European Citizen Science Conference “Citizen Science – Innovation in Open Science, Society and Policy” (Berlin, 2016). I took part to the working group (with members from Europe, Australia and USA) that held a workshop on CS and its science-policy impact at Leipzig in April 2015 and that is now working to produce a paper as a result of that experience. I am a member of the Advisory Board of the EU funded DITO (Doing-It-Together Science) project. In April 2016 I participated in a panel of experts for the selection of some citizen science projects in Austria in the framework of the Top Citizen Science (TCS) funding initiative, initiated by the Austrian Science Fund FWF, Austrian Ministry of Science, Research and Economy (BMWFW), Center for Citizen Science (Zentrum für Citizen Science) at the OeAD – the Austrian Agency for International Cooperation in Education and Research. In April 2016 I was proposed as National Member for Italy of the Management Committee of the COST Action CA15212 “Citizen Science to promote creativity, scientific literacy, and innovation throughout Europe”. 

Candidates nominated for the Advisory Board so far:

  • Jan Riise, Manager for Engagement at Mistra Urban Future, Chalmers University of Technology

Expertise: Science communication projects in the interface between science, public and policy-makers; urban planning

Why should this person be a member of the advisory board?: Jan has a long experience with the organization of science events at the European level and has an extensive network of contacts. In addition, the participation and inclusive approaches of Mistra Urban Futures,, which is and organisation made up of four local interaction platforms, spread in four cities around the world: Cape Town, Gothenburg, Greater Manchester and Kisumu, can help ECSA support citizen science as a phenomenon supporting sustainable development and transition to more sustainable lifestyles.

More information: Jan Riise is the Executive Director of European Science Events Association (EUSEA) from 1 January 2013. Jan has a BA in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Gothenburg. In 1997, he co-founded the International Science Festival Gothenburg, and he has since then worked on a range of science communication projects in the interface between science, public and policy-makers. Jan was president of Eusea 2008-2010, and he is currently on the Scientific Committee of the global PCST Network. Jan has been a speaker, moderator and organizer at several international conferences, including Eusea, ESOF, AAAS and Ecsite Annual Conferences. The Eusea collaboration with the Beijing Association for Science and Technology was initiated by Jan Riise and former president Mikkel Bohm in 2006. Jan will also be coordinating the Eusea participation in the PLACES project.

  • Sven Schade, Scientific Officer at European Commission - DG Joint Research Centre

Expertise: Open science, open innovaiton, interoperability, future technologies, knowledge engineering, (semantic) sensor web, spatial data infrastructures.

Why should this person be a member of the advisory board?: Expertise, vast experience as well as networks in strategic areas relevant for ECSA development, such as geospatial analytics, multi-disciplinary interoperability and open innovation. His work includes research dealing with Citizen Science, policy and Shared Environmental Information System (SEIS), and Open Science.

More information:


Share on