Research & Innovation - Participant Portal


TOPIC : Consolidating and expanding the knowledge base on citizen science

Topic identifier: SwafS-17-2019
Publication date: 27 October 2017

Types of action: RIA Research and Innovation action
Opening date:
11 December 2018
Deadline: 02 April 2019 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020 H2020 website
Pillar: Science with and for Society
Work Programme Year: H2020-2018-2020
Work Programme Part: Science with and for Society
Topic Updates
  • 20 December 2018 16:36

    A policy briefing recording for this topic is available together with the slides under 'Topic conditions' (section 8. additional documents).

    For this topic, in terms of the impact, consortia are expected to contribute to one or more of the MoRRI indicators. To this end, please see ‘Monitoring the evolution and benefits of responsible Research and Innovation’  (and related publications).



  • 26 February 2018 13:49

    For this topic, in terms of the impact, consortia are expected to contribute to one or more of the MoRRI indicators. To this end, please note that ‘The evolution of Responsible Research and Innovation in Europe: The MoRRI indicators report (D4.3)’ has been recently published and is available to download at

Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

Grassroots initiatives related to citizen science are blooming across the world. Citizen science has the potential to bring a wide variety of benefits to researchers, citizens, policy makers and society and across research and innovation (R&I) cycles. It can make science more socially relevant, accelerate and enable production of new scientific knowledge, help policy makers monitor regulatory implementation and compliance, increase public awareness about science and ownership of policy making, and increase prevalence of evidence-based policy making.

The growth of citizen science brings with it a need to understand its breadth and consequences. How is citizen science conducted, who is involved and in what way(s), and what effect(s) does it have on R&I systems, scientists and the citizens involved? What are the different incentives and disincentives for career scientists to get involved in citizen science? What are the enablers and the barriers of citizen science, what are good practices, and what are its limits? It is also important to identify the democratic, societal, economic and scientific benefits of citizen science. Moreover, the deep and profound implications on science as a discipline, a profession and as a practice, and also on science's relationship with and for society, need to be considered.


This topic will deepen scientific knowledge on citizen science. It will work very closely with and examine and synthesise data arising from existing citizen science projects (in particular, but not limited to, those funded by SWAFS) to better understand participation patterns in citizen science, the types of activities conducted, the transformative potentials of participating in citizen science, challenges faced by citizen scientists, enablers and barriers to participating in citizen science (e.g. in terms of socio-economic status, gender, age, and in terms of R&I policies), and a strengthened knowledge base on its benefits. It will place developments in global and European historical contexts, and develop understanding about the implications of citizen science on science itself, and on science's relationship with and for society. It will involve stakeholders from local to European levels, from all parts of the quadruple helix, and taking into account gender, geographical and socio-economic differences, to develop policy messages that work towards an enabling R&I policy environment for citizen science and maximisation of the benefits of citizen science.

In line with the strategy for EU international cooperation in research and innovation (COM(2012)497), international cooperation is encouraged.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of the order of EUR 2.5 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact:

Consortia should aim to consolidate and expand the scientific and policy knowledge base about citizen science. They should identify key incentives, disincentives, barriers and enablers to involvement of citizens and scientists. They should document, synthesise, and present evidence about the societal, democratic, economic and scientific benefits (and potential caveats) of citizen science. They should aim to impact on R&I policies by developing implementable policy recommendations and targeting them at key stakeholders. They should aim to indirectly work towards MoRRI indicators[1] (e.g. SLSE4, PE1, PE2, PE3, PE5, PE6, PE7, PE8, PE9, PE10, OA6) and identified and appropriate Sustainable Development Goals[2].

Cross-cutting Priorities:

Open Science
International cooperation
Socio-economic science and humanities

[1]See (Table 3.2).


Topic conditions and documents

1. Eligible countries: described in Annex A of the Work Programme.
A number of non-EU/non-Associated Countries that are not automatically eligible for funding have made specific provisions for making funding available for their participants in Horizon 2020 projects. See the information in the Online Manual.


2. Eligibility and admissibility conditions: described in Annex B and Annex C of the Work Programme.


Proposal page limits and layout: please refer to Part B of the proposal template in the submission system below.


3. Evaluation:

  • Evaluation criteria, scoring and thresholds are described in Annex H of the Work Programme.  
  • Submission and evaluation processes are described in the Online Manual.

4. Indicative time for evaluation and grant agreements:

Information on the outcome of evaluation (single-stage call): maximum 5 months from the deadline for submission.
Signature of grant agreements: maximum 8 months from the deadline for submission.

5. Proposal templates, evaluation forms and model grant agreements (MGA):

Research and Innovation Action:

Specific provisions and funding rates
Standard proposal template
Standard evaluation form
General MGA - Multi-Beneficiary
Annotated Grant Agreement

6. Additional provisions:

Horizon 2020 budget flexibility

Members of consortium are required to conclude a consortium agreement, in principle prior to the signature of the grant agreement.

Grants awarded under this topic will be subject to the following additional dissemination obligations: consortia must make active efforts to freely share, in a timely manner and as appropriate, the research strategies, methodologies, and raw and analysed data deriving from their activities (including any evaluation activities), with the other projects funded by SWAFS subject to these same additional dissemination obligations. .

Applicants must acknowledge and incorporate these obligations in their proposal, outlining the efforts they will make towards this in Annex 1 of the proposal. The respective option of Article 29.1 of the Model Grant Agreement will be applied.

7. Open access must be granted to all scientific publications resulting from Horizon 2020 actions.

Where relevant, proposals should also provide information on how the participants will manage the research data generated and/or collected during the project, such as details on what types of data the project will generate, whether and how this data will be exploited or made accessible for verification and re-use, and how it will be curated and preserved.

Open access to research data
The Open Research Data Pilot has been extended to cover all Horizon 2020 topics for which the submission is opened on 26 July 2016 or later. Projects funded under this topic will therefore by default provide open access to the research data they generate, except if they decide to opt-out under the conditions described in Annex L of the Work Programme. Projects can opt-out at any stage, that is both before and after the grant signature.

Note that the evaluation phase proposals will not be evaluated more favourably because they plan to open or share their data, and will not be penalised for opting out.

Open research data sharing applies to the data needed to validate the results presented in scientific publications. Additionally, projects can choose to make other data available open access and need to describe their approach in a Data Management Plan.

Projects need to create a Data Management Plan (DMP), except if they opt-out of making their research data open access. A first version of the DMP must be provided as an early deliverable within six months of the project and should be updated during the project as appropriate. The Commission already provides guidance documents, including a template for DMPs. See the Online Manual.

Eligibility of costs: costs related to data management and data sharing are eligible for reimbursement during the project duration.

The legal requirements for projects participating in this pilot are in the article 29.3 of the Model Grant Agreement.


8. Additional documents:

Applicants are advised to view the policy briefing recording as well as the accompanying slides and to read carefully the introduction to '16. Science with and for Society WP 2018-20'. Please note that this material will also be part of the evaluator briefing.

SwafS-17-2019 policy briefing recording

SwafS-17-2019 policy briefing slides

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) H2020-SwafS-2018-2020

1. Introduction WP 2018-20
16. Science with and for society WP 2018-20
18. Dissemination, Exploitation and Evaluation WP 2018-20

General annexes to the Work Programme 2018-2020

Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Regulation of Establishment
Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Rules for Participation
Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Specific Programme

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To access existing draft proposals for this topic, please login to the Participant Portal and select the My Proposals page of the My Area section.

Type of Action Research and Innovation action [RIA]
Topic Consolidating and expanding the knowledge base on citizen science - SwafS-17-2019
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