Sunflowers are amazing – they purify the air and the soil and they attract bees... scientists, teachers, & the planet would agree, sunflowers are an incredible resource. I’m Erinma – based at the University of Manchester in Life Sciences – I trained originally as a neuroscientist - & Engagement Fellow supported by The Wellcome Trust.
Add images of games, experiments, mobile etc from the poster
Last year MOSI ran Turing’s Sunflowers, a citizen science project to explore Alan Turing’s unfinished experiment exploring number patterns in sunflowers. Core partners: MOSI, MSF, University of Manchester and Manchester City Council
The Turing’s Sunflowers project team. Professor Jonathan Swinton, Computation Biologist came up with the idea and approached Natalie Ireland at MOSI as director of Manchester Science Festival. Science communicator and digital producer, Dr Erinma Ochu, produced the project working with Natalie, Jonathan & a range of other partners. These figures show the scope for wider participation in terms of events outside of Greater Manchester. For our next citizen science project, Hooked, we want to better involve other Science Museum Group venues.
Additional partners that put on events, spread the word and supported the project. Key to the social media strategy was the partnership with BBC Outreach… who helped us with the crowdsourcing campaign.
Just a few examples of what people did, and not just digital…. Artists’ spear fish were inspired by TS to create a giant baby with a sunflower headress for the day parade
The final evaluation by sally fort revealed what people did… and they didn’t just grow sunflowers… alongside the media reach of the project, social sharing and contributions through events, blogging and giving talks and creating learning resources was critical to success.
Choir sung a specially composed fibonacci song so people could hear what the number patterns sounded like
Hello, I’m Erinma and in the spirit of Tedx City. I’m going share stories of social innovation that spread from everyday folk in three cities, Manchester, Sheffield and New York & now Leeds. I’m going to talk about the tools, techniques we used- and what we learned from city to city. Now my background is in neuroscience. And, whilst it’s a bit of an imaginative leap to go from exploring how the brain works to urban food growing, these topics and not completely unrelated. How many people here live in cities? There’s growing evidence that people that live in urban areas are more likely to suffer from mental health challenges How many of you live near a park or garden? There’s also evidence to suggest that green space in cities contributes out mental wellbeing – just looking at nature is good for us. Now how many of you know you next door neighbour by name, two neighbours, three neighbours, five? More than five? Where do you live? If you ever move to xxxx you need to know this lady…. But there’s hope for those who don’t know your neighbours or live near green spaces because, Everyday Growing, the project I am going to share with you today is all about how to get started. I’m, also a filmmaker and my role on the project, was to share stories through making a film with Caroline, who’s here actually.
Participants walked around Old Trafford in Manchester, taking photos and recording vital statistics, such as aspect, water supply, security, and surface materials, for any site they thought could be used for food growing,. Sites identified included ginnels, grassed over areas, derelict plots and unloved nooks ad crannies.
To map growing spaces in Old Trafford, we used crowdmap – an open source platform by Ushahidi – often used for mapping crisis around the world. In Old Trafford, 26 people found 82 sites over 2 walks where food could be grown in land totalling around 5.2 acres. That’s a lot of space for a lot of vegetables and potentially quite a few jobs could be created to farm the land. One of the things that Farida wondered as a research was what synergy there might be between the open data community and the grow your own community – both have this perspective of a commons – shared land, shared resources – In Sheffield.. They used google map – here’s the map of their walk…
Thanks to all the partners & to Imran/ farida for inviting me to speak
Tweddle, J.C., Robinson, L.D., Pocock, M.J.O & Roy, H.E. (2012). Guide to citizen science: developing, implementing and evaluating citizen science to study biodiversity and the environment in the UK. Natural History Museum and NERC Centre for Ecology & Hydrology for UK-EOF.
Cohn, JP (2008) Citizen Science: Can Volunteers Do Real Research? BioScience 58: 192-197.
Frietag, A, Pfeffer, M.J. (2013) Process, not product: Investigating Recommendations for improving Citizen Science "Success". PLoS ONE 8(5): e64079. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0064079
Citizen led social innovation - Open University seminar
Citizen-led social innovation:
Public participation in science, usually unpaid, by groups & individuals
Citizen science, valuable approach to scientific discovery for monitoring the environment
(Roy et al, 2013)
Working at the 'edge’ – making use of resources through collaboration (Carolyn Kagan, 2007)
1. Crowdsource number patterns in nature dataset
2. Engage 3000 people from Greater Manchester
3. Learn about Turing & how number patterns work in sunflowers
4. Provide media stories
Media Reach: 62.8Million
User generated content views: (images & video): 124,248
Event attendees: 3046 (80% from Greater Manchester)
Email registrations: 28% from Greater Manchester
Sunflowers pledged: 12,000 (35% from Greater Manchester)
Other Blogs: 40
Countries: data from 7 countries; pledges from 22
What did people do?
Open Voice Community Choir
Open Voice Community Choir
1. Partnership, collaboration and power
2. Blurring the boundaries between researcher and
researched, academic and activist
3. Community rights, conflict and democratic
4. Ownership and dissemination of data, findings and
5. Anonymity, privacy and confidentiality
6. Institutional ethical review processes
Banks, S. (et al) (2013)
An approach to research that is based on a commitment
to sharing power and resources and working towards
beneficial outcomes for all participants, especially
Embedded in the research process: attitudes, ethos, ways
of working, relationships
1. Mutual respect
2. Equality and inclusion
3. Democratic participation
4. Active learning
5. Making a difference
6. Collective action
7. Personal integrity
Banks, S. (et al) (2013)
Cagan, K (2007) Working at the Edge, Psychologist, Vol 20, part 4, pp224 - 227
Roy, H.E., Pocock, M.J.O., Preston, C.D., Roy, D.B., Savage, J., Tweddle, J.C. & Robinson, L.D. (2012)
Understanding Citizen Science & Environmental Monitoring. Final Report. NERC Centre for Ecology &
Hydrology and Natural History Museum on behalf of UK-EOF. 175pp
Tweddle, J.C., Robinson, L.D., Pocock, M.J.O & Roy, H.E. (2012). Guide to
citizen science: developing, implementing and evaluating citizen science to
study biodiversity and the environment in the UK. Natural History Museum
and NERC Centre for Ecology & Hydrology for UK-EOF.
Riesch H, Potter C and Davies, L (2013) Combining citizen science with public engagement: the open air
laboratories programme. Journal of Science Communication 1 – 18; http://jcom.sissa.it/archive/12/34/JCOM1203%282013%29A03/JCOM1203%282013%29A03.pdf
Frietag, A, Pfeffer, M.J. (2013) Process, not product: Investigating Recommendations for improving Citizen
Science "Success". PLoS ONE 8(5): e64079. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0064079
Banks, S. (et al) (2013) 'Everyday ethics in community-based participatory research', in Contemporary Social
Science: Journal of the Academy of Social Sciences