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Open Database of Small-Scale Solar PV Installations: a Citizen Science Initiative
C. del Cañizo, A.B. Cristóbal, L. Barbosa, G. Revuelta, S. Haas, M. Victoria, M. Brocklehurst
Finance, Markets and Policies
Subtopic: Policies and Scenarios for Renewables, Societal and Global Challenges
Event: 37th European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition
Session: 7DO.9.5
ISBN: 3-936338-73-6
0,00 EUR
Document(s): presentation


Citizen Science can be defined as the practice of public participation and collaboration in which some scientific work is done by members of the general public. It is becoming a powerful approach to build a new relationship between science and society, in which the desire of citizens to participate more actively in knowledge production meets the needs of researchers to address certain research questions. Under the framework of the European project GRECO, funded by the H2020 SWAFS (Science With and For Society) program, a Citizen Science Initiative has been launched aiming at collectively contributing to Photovoltaics (PV) development. The process resulting in this specific initiative deserves some attention, as it has shown in practice how to generate a “responsible” citizen science initiative, in which the research question has been designed collectively from the beginning, involving a diversity of actors in order to encourage creativity while addressing their interests and concerns, adapting the project design accordingly. The Initiative has been developed in four steps. In the first one, we invited people working with PV to answer three “simple” questions: How can citizens contribute to research on PV? How can PV research benefit citizens? What are the main constraints in getting citizens to adopt solar energy innovations? We collected 40 responses from researchers of the GRECO consortium and more than 60 responses from researchers, NGOs, students and people interested in renewable energies out of the consortium. An online survey complemented these results with additional opinions. For the second step, we performed a hackaton-like participatory online design process: during one week, 61 registered participants from 15 different countries worked individually or in teams to make a proposal, having as a starting point the responses gathered in the first step. An assessment committee revised 12 proposals in which almost 30 participants contributed and selected a winning initiative: Generation Solar.