UCL Institute for Global Prosperity


IGP launches Citizen Science Academy in east London

24 September 2021

The IGP is delighted to announce the launch of UCL's Citizen Science Academy, an ambitious new initiative to deliver practice-led and community-based education, training, and recognition for citizen science

A citizen social scientist speaking at the workshop

The Academy’s first programme welcomes 11 citizen social scientists from east London who will join a 10 week employment and training programme in qualitative social research methods. They will be researching what supports and prevents people in east London from thriving and living a prosperous life which forms part of IGP’s new longitudinal study of prosperity and Olympic legacy regeneration in east London.  The Academy's second programme is currently being designed with Camden Council and will commence in early 2022.

Running from September 20th 2021 to November 25th 2021 at Hub67 and the Good Growth Hub in Hackney Wick and the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park respectively, the citizen social science research training programme will involve:

  • Practice-based workshops led by the IGP ProCol UK team and Dr Michael Woodrow, Lecturer in Engineering​, Faculty of Engineering Science at UCL
  • Qualitative data collection including in-depth interviews, focus groups, walking ethnography and photo-elicitation interviews
  • Analysis and presentation of their research 
  • Writing up and producing interview-based stories about prosperity and regeneration in east London

This builds on IGP's previous work with citizen social scientists to rethink prosperity in east London, Camden (North London), Lebanon, Kenya, Tanzania, and to develop citizen social science as a new way of developing policy relevant knowledge to shape place-based policy-making and social action in the UK and globally. The Citizen Science Academy will focus on practice-based learning to equip citizens, and voluntary and public sector organisations with knowledge and practical skills about qualitative social research methods to influence local decision-making and support place-based social action.

The Academy launch is a major step forward for UCL's citizen science initiatives and commitment to principles of civic education. We are partnering with the UCL Office for Open Science and Scholarship and the new cross-faculty, UCL Citizen Science Working Group, to pilot a Kitemark – a non-academic recognition for citizen social scientists which is scheduled for launch in 2022.

IGP would like to thank the London Prosperity Board partners such as the London Legacy Development Corporation, Royal Docks, Poplar HARCA, Lendlease, the London Boroughs of: Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest, Newham, Barking & Dagenham and Camden as well as, leading voluntary and third sector organisations in the community, Hackney Quest, Leaders in the Community, and Compost London (CIC), who are employing the citizen social scientists.

Learn about the citizen science methods in the following videos:

Citizen Science in east London



Citizen Science in Beirut, Lebanon




Citizen Science in Camden/Euston



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