Presentations are available here

Citizen Science in the Classroom: a mutualistic relationship – David Black, Groton School

 In ecology a mutualism is defined as a relationship between two species in which both benefit. Students become more engaged with research if they feel that the work they are doing goes beyond themselves and their classroom. Being part of a larger project increases the feelings of relevance and purpose so important to engagement and successful learning. This engagement is further increased if the students are convinced that their efforts may help answer a question important to others. Furthermore, they are then more likely to learn the fundamental concepts being taught. Such work also affords students the opportunity to collaborate with students from other cultures and with diverse backgrounds, providing the opportunity for global perspectives on current issues. On the other side of the mutualism, students working under the supervision of a trained teacher have a resource available to them if they have questions. Their data will be reviewed prior to submission to the database and analyses can be done with careful precision. If the teacher is properly trained in the study, it is likely that the quality of the information collected will be of higher value to the researcher than that submitted by individuals working in isolation or with less background. Creating a structure for the inclusion of students in Citizen Science has tremendous potential for all involved.

Ways to Make Citizen Science Projects more Collaborative, and Ultimately the Data more Reliable – Midge Cozzens, DIMACS, Rutgers University

Citizen science has the power to engage citizens of all ages in all countries in the world in science and mathematics while collecting valuable data.  They very often contribute valuable observations and insights. Today’s technology has made all of this possible as citizens and scientists collaborate across the globe.  As a mathematician and mathematics educator, I will give examples of ways these citizen participants can learn various mathematical and computational tools as they collect important data and make crucial observations.  One such example is pattern matching using CT scans or satellite images (locating the downed Malaysian airline).  A second example is elementary statistical analysis of collected data with known data in areas of conservation biology and environmental science.

Integrated participatory modeling using the CoOPLAaGE toolkit – Nils Ferrand, IRSTEA, Montpellier (Géraldine Abrami, Emeline Hassenforder, Wanda Aquae-Gaudi)

COOPLAAGE is a kit of participatory tools covering a wide spectrum of needs within the decision-making chain: CREA- WAG for participatory modeling of socio-environmental situations, WAG for participatory simulation (role-playing games), JUST-A-GRID for deliberative framing regarding social justice, COOPLAAN for integrated multi-sectoral multi-level planning, ENCORE for the overall evaluation of socio-cognitive impacts, PRE-PAR for procedural negotiation. Each of these tools was designed (and tested) for stakeholders to be able to undertake their modeling process autonomously. They are based on a post-normal approach and require a minimal external data without falling into relativism. Their “coupling” allow to sequence and integrate knowledge, prior to a coherent and sustainable approach of socio-environmental change.

Science for and by the society: interdisciplinarity as a resource for a better understanding of actual innovation – Sandra Laugier, CNRS, Mission pour l’interdisciplinarité.

Direct democracy in a polarized society: storable votes – Jean-François Laslier, PSE, École Normale Supérieure

 In a setting where several separate decisions have to be taken, “Storable Votes” allows the voter to choose how to allocate a fixed number of votes among the different issues at stake. A society is “polarized” when the same group of individual forms a majority and could, under majority rule, decide on all issues. We study the Storable Vote mechanism, in theory and in the laboratory, for the case of a strictly polarized society.

Controversy of public policy analytics in terms of risks prevention: the case of air pollution – Myriam Merad, INERIS

France has an ambitious policy in terms of atmospheric pollution prevention. Thus, many efforts have been done to regulate emission sources, to prevent pollution episodes and pollution peaks and to maintain the monitoring in this regard. For a long time, significant contributions have been done to assess both the environmental and economic impacts induced by the air pollution risk prevention policy. However, the impacts for the society of risk policies can’t be reduced to these last categories of impacts. Indeed, this should be considered even if there is inherent difficulty to assign to a risk prevention policy or to a specific actor the adoption, the monitoring and the innovation induced by this policy, and the difficulty induced by the lag between the moment where the policy is framed and the moment where the policy is implemented and produce the expected impacts. The talk aims at sharing methods to investigate the societal impacts of risk policies,  the in-depth causes of the perception gap between the “public institutions and authorities services” and the so-called “public opinion” and at sharing how controversies can be considered as low signals to a need of adaptation of the public policy.

Information sharing to face threats in renewable resources management: lessons from case studies – Nicolas Paget, IRSTEA Montpellier and LAMSADE

In the context of natural resources management, information sharing artefact implementation occurs more and more frequently at local levels: environmental dynamics, individual practices… Case studies helped identify the fact that these artefacts often come as an answer to perceived or real threats that need collective mitigation. We will present a typology of these threats and information sharing stakes for each categories and how this can help useful information sharing artefacts for actors using resources. This presentation is part of a PhD thesis.

Engaging citizens to Ecosystems Management: lessons learnt from the TESS project – Jason Papathanassiou, University of Macedonia

The TESS project brought together 14 partners from 10 different European countries. Its main aim was to produce the design of a Decision Support System to facilitate environmental assessments while simultaneously encouraging the wider public to participate in local level activities focusing on restoring and maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem services. The vision was to support biodiversity restoration across Europe, through an internet based information system that could unify all available knowledge to guide decisions for the benefit of biodiversity and livelihoods. In addition, TESS assessed the possibility of non-experts applying environmental models to the available local data, in order improve their immediate decisions outside the higher level policy cycle.

Including citizens in the design of Smart Cities – Needs, results and challenges of interdisciplinary – Hervé Rivano, INRIA, Lyon

ICT is accountable for the design of the cyber-physical systems, networks, applications and computer science that are, in part, enabling the rise of smart-cities. Cities are, before all, a society of citizens, and a human construction. They cannot be considered only as a system of systems. Smart-cities should not reduce to the superposition of very efficient « Machine to Machine » systems. The greater challenge is to embrace the complexity of urban development and citizens’ behaviors, and ICT models and theories are not always sufficient. Interdisciplinary research is a challenge per se but cannot be avoided. In this talk I will introduce briefly the IMU LabEx of the University of Lyon and present an emblematic result of interdisciplinary research: when cellular network usage analysis can help characterizing the urban land use.

Data and Citizen Science – Fred Roberts, DIMACS, Rutgers University

For Citizens Science to be useful in influencing policy, one must pay attention to the quality of the data that result from “citizen” observations. We will explore this question with examples from observational data gathering in connection with several projects involving students.

Soft Data and Public Policy. Twitter Data for ESPON Policy Makers – Marta Severo, GERIICO, Université de Lille and Amel Feredj, UMS Riate

In recent years, decision-makers have revealed several discrepancies in relation to traditional data used in public policy, caused for example by excessively long publication delays, the insufficient coverage of topics that would otherwise be of interest for territorial cohesion, and the top-down process of data creation. To many of them, the exponential deluge of information available on the Internet represents a potential answer to such dissatisfaction. Data recently made available on the Internet (especially data from social media) seem to provide interesting alternatives to the failures of traditional data, namely shorter publication time spans that are more adequate for public action, the coverage of new topics of interest, and bottom-up approaches to information. Based on the European Programme ESPON’s experience in this field, this paper aims first at presenting how these data (which we propose to call “soft data”) could integrate official data in supporting the decision-making process in a city, and second, at evaluating the actual impact generated by these data on processes in public policy. The analysis is based on a case study that examines the use of Twitter data in urban policymaking.

Citizen Science in Policy Analytics – Alexis Tsoukiàs, LAMSADE and GDR3720

 The production of distributed data and knowledge through citizen initiatives is now a strongly established reality. How these data should be integrated in the policy making process? And how this impact the way through participation (and thus democracy) should be conceived in the future?

A multi-criteria decision analysis as an innovative approach to managing Lyme disease – Jean-Philippe Waaub, GERAD and UQAM (Cécile Aenishaenslin, Valérie Hongoh, Hassane Djibrilla Cissé, Anne Gatewood Hoen, Karim Samoura, Pascal Michel, Denise Bélanger)

The recent emergence of Lyme disease in Quebec, Canada is a good example of a complex health issue for which the public health sector must find protective interventions. Traditional preventive and control interventions can have important environmental, social and economic impacts and as a result, decision-making requires a systems approach capable of integrating these multiple aspects of interventions.

Collaborative Decision Making Process: A flexible, preferences based methodology – Pascale Zaraté, IRIT, Université Paul Sabatier, Toulouse (Christophe Sibertin-Blanc)

The specific benefice of a collective decision process mainly rests upon the possibility for the participants to confront their respective points of views. To this end, they must have cognitive and technical tools supporting a common understanding and supporting the reasons that motivate their own preferences, while allowing keeping some information and feelings for their own. The talk presents the basis of such a cooperative decision making methodology that allows sharing information by accurately distinguishing the components of a decision and the steps of its elaboration.