Upcoming EO4GEO Training Actions — Project work on Citizen science and geospatial data

SPACE4GEO
4 min readSep 30, 2021

A new EO4GEO training opportunity is coming soon! In February — March 2022 SADL, the Spatial Applications Division at KU Leuven, will give students the opportunity to realise a project work on citizen science and geospatial data.

The project work is based on the My Gardenlab (Mijn Tuinlab in Dutch) as use case. My Gardenlab is a platform for citizen science in gardens. It brings interdisciplinary scientific research into people’s backyards. As such it stimulates involvement and change of behaviour of garden owners with as long term goals the improvement of ecosystem functions of the garden landscape and a higher appreciation of gardens as a fully-fledged part of the living environment. At the moment almost 40.000 citizens are registered on the platform. More than 10 different projects were launched already through the platform.

The Mijn Tuinlab projects involve interaction with and data collected from garden owners. This information is often combined with data from other sources like Copernicus Earth Observation (EO) data and different geospatial datasets available through the INSPIRE Geoportal. In the project work, participants are stimulated to develop their own citizen science garden project. In small interdisciplinary groups they set a research goal and the garden owners involvement, build the communication around the project and develop the technical building blocks to execute the project. Ideally the proposed projects combine geospatial data collected from the garden owners with other geospatial data from Copernicus and/or INSPIRE.

Courses

Before the actual project work starts, EO4GEO and KU Leuven will offer a number of courses covering the different technologies needed to build a successful citizen science project (small changes in the program are still possible):

Introductionary webinars:

  • EO4GEO
  • The European Green Deal
  • Citizen science
  • My Gardenlab

Open and free geospatial data (with hands on exercises); what is available and how to access it:

  • Copernicus, the European Union’s earth observation programme
  • INSPIRE geoportal

Technological aspects (practically oriented; open source; How to’s):

  • Setting up a database and GeoServer
  • Geospatial standards (WFS, OGC API Features, GEOJSON,…)
  • Building a geospatial web client

The project work

The courses give the participants enough background and technical skills to develop their own geospatial citizen science project. In small groups and with support of EO4GEO experts the participants will implement a citizen science project that contributes to the goals of the European Green Deal and involves data collected from citizens in combination with other geospatial resources. Everything is covered from brainstorming on ideas, working out the details, developing the technical implementation over communicating and launching the project to processing the results. The aim is to develop a project where citizen data is combined with EO and INSPIRE data to investigate (a specific aspect of) the influence of private gardens in cities.

Who can benefit from this offer?

The courses and project work will provide insight in the power of citizen science and geospatial and EO data. But it will also teach the practical skills to really apply them in your daily activities. Therefore this offers aims at:

  • Geospatial students wanting to learn more about citizen science and train the practical implementation of geospatial technologies.
  • Students from different domains that want to explore the possibilities of citizen science and geospatial data
  • Researchers or experts searching for a practical training on citizen science and/or wanting to discover the possibilities of geospatial data offered by Copernicus or the INSPIRE Geoportal.

Pre-registration

Final program and registration will be available later this year. If you are interested, please mail to marc.olijslagers[at]kuleuven.be. We will keep you up to date. Please mention i) if you’re a student or active researcher/expert; ii) in what domain you are active; iii) if you already use citizen science, Copernicus or INSPIRE data.

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SPACE4GEO

Large-scale Skills Partnership for the downstream segment of space economy dedicated to data, services and applications(under the EC initiative Pact for Skills)