Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Specific challenge: New in-situ observatories ('Citizen Observatories') based on citizens' own devices (e.g. smart phones, tablets, laptops, and other social media) used together with innovative technologies can strengthen environmental monitoring capabilities, have the potential to generate new and original applications to reduce investment and running costs of in-situ observations and monitoring applications and solutions, and involve novel partnerships between the private sector, public bodies, NGOs and citizens. However, achieving this depends on further development and testing in real conditions, wider deployment and commercialisation by the private sector and greater user acceptance. This requires leveraging emerging technologies, data and information sharing, developing services and actively engaging in governance at all levels and scales in the domain of environment. It also calls for innovative approaches and tools to handle complexity, interactions and interfaces and to facilitate knowledge transfer, assessment, valuation, uptake and exploitation of data and results for policy, industry and society at large.   


Scope: Proposals should scale up, demonstrate, deploy, test in its entirity and validate in real-life conditions the system proposed for Citizen Observatories and the effective transfer of environmental knowledge for policy, industrial, research and societal use, with a focus on the domain of land cover/land use, both in rural and urban areas. Proposals should include a strong involvement of citizens and citizens’ associations together with the industrial sector, in particular SMEs, as far as possible. The data collected should complement those from existing systems (e.g. the Copernicus Land Service) and surveys, including national surveys.


The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 3 and 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: Lowered cost and extension of the in-situ component of the GEOSS and Copernicus initiatives. Better decision-making through the empowerment and active role of citizens and citizen's associations in environmental monitoring, co-operative planning and environmental stewardship, with special impact on land resources management. Enhanced implementation of governance and global policy objectives. Increased deployment and market uptake of innovative in-situ monitoring techniques. Increased European role in the business of in-situ monitoring of the environment.


Type of action: Innovation actions

Record Number: 664594 / Last updated on: 2015-03-25