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Call for Citizen Science projects

In 2019, Leiden University is celebrating its 444th year of operation. This milestone will be marked by various projects and initiatives. This includes a Citizen Science project! The Citizen Science Lab is looking for project ideas involving real research that is not possible without the contribution of local residents. Residents, organisations, networks, and scientists are encouraged and welcome to send questions to the Lab before 15 March 2019.

In Citizen Science projects research questions ar residents contribute towards real scientific research as co-scientists. They work together within a project and the resident participants do more than just data collection and are involved as much as possible during all phases of research.


The Citizen Science Lab offers support in various ways:

  • Help with the development and brainstorming of a good proposal. Please contact Liselotte Rambonnet (cslab@strw.leidenuniv.nl)
  • A workshop in May 2019 with scientists, residents, app-developers, educators etc. to develop a project
  • Funding to carry out the selected project (from Leiden University and the Municipality of Leiden)
  • Help with establishing and conducting the citizen science project
  • Help with the presentation and distribution of scientific results

Evaluation criteria

Evaluation criteria for the proposals are as follows:

  • Clear and achievable (scientific) goals
  • Strong component of public contribution
  • A thorough plan to involve local residents in the proposed project
  • Applicant commitment (including time and resources)
  • Regional relevance for Leiden/The Hague
  • First anticipated results during the anniversary year of Leiden University (February 2019 to February 2020)
  • Innovative approach


  • 15 March 2019: Project idea submission deadline
  • 31 March 2019: Project proposal deadline
  • April 2019: Selection of at least 1 project; gathering of the project’s team consisting of residents, scientists, societal organisations, etc.
  • May 2019: Two-day workshop to develop project
  • Autumn 2019: Launch of Citizen Science project
  • December 2019: First results available
  • February 2020: Present results during Dies Natalis

What do you have to do?

In order to be considered to conduct a citizen-science project, the following must be satisfied to complete an application:

  • A written project proposal of no more than 2 pages in which the project plan is sufficiently described and the above evaluation criteria are addressed  For a suggested proposal template, please contact cslab@strw.leidenuniv.nl
  • Although not required, it is strongly encouraged that local  residents, scientists and collaborative organisations are identified to strengthen the substantiation of the plan.
  • For help and advice on the development of the project plan, please contact Liselotte Rambonnet (cslab@strw.leidenuniv.nl)
  • Deadline for submitting project ideas: 15 March 2019
  • Deadline for submitting project proposals: 31 March 2019
  • Complete project proposal’s should be sent to cslab@strw.leidenuniv.nl

Citizen Science

In Citizen Science projects, residents contribute towards real scientific research as co-scientists. Residents and scientists work together within a project, as residents are supported and involved as much as possible during all phases of the research.  Such projects could include the measurement of the local air quality, the counting of birds, butterflies or bees in their back gardens or the analysis of footage from wildlife cameras in Africa. Many of these projects are started by scientists who discover that they require the help of residents to collect sufficient data over a large area or further support to analyse digital images that computers can’t yet manage. Furthermore, an increasing number of these projects are initiated by residents themselves that have identified a problem in their neighbourhood that scientific data or analyses could address. The Citizen Science Lab brings together residents and scientists to gain new insights for science and society.

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