Skip to main content

LAB Metadecidim -Session 14- decidim.ambCiència: Participation technologies for public policies guided by citizen science

Lugar :
Fàbrica de Creació Fabra i Coats Carrer de Sant Adrià, 20, 08030 Barcelona Sala 1 (Tercera Planta)
Fecha :
The creation of public policies is an essential mechanism for institutions to provide services that respond to society's needs and problems. One form of innovation in the design of public policies is scientific advice. The most common formula is to deploy offices of scientifically trained technical teams to gather evidence to guide the decision-making process [1]. There are experiences of this type at different scales in both the legislative [2-6] and executive power [7-9]. However, there is also a broad scientific literature that reflects on the limits and potentials of the relationship between science and democracy, pointing for example to different paradoxes about uncertainty and legitimacy in the use of scientific knowledge, and about the dependence on existing advisory agreements [10-14].
Another form of social innovation in urban policy-making, inspired in part by the need to increase the legitimacy of decision-making, is the co-production of public policies. In this modality, the mobilization and empowerment of social forces makes it possible to build new "capacities" and transform power structures and relations with institutions [15]. However, this model of collaborative governance also poses a great challenge due to the complexity of articulating meeting spaces that build such legitimacy and result in the best public policies, thus generating value for society [16].
At the intersection between science and participation, there is a growing tendency to implement citizen science models in which citizens actively contribute to science, either through their intellectual effort, the knowledge that surrounds them, or with their tools and resources [17]. These different ways in which citizens can participate are in turn different conceptions of citizen science as a political and democratizing element. Faced with the usual "contributory" paradigm that restricts citizen participation to the data collection phase, there is another "co-created" modality with greater collaboration with the citizenry, sustained by the adequacy of materials, the provision of facilitation mechanisms and the promotion of values such as trust, creativity and transparency [18].
Can we imagine scenarios of democratization of the processes of formulation and decision making of public policies? [19]. Barcelona and its metropolitan area constitute an exceptional ecosystem in terms of the co-production of public policies and citizen science initiatives. On the one hand, in recent years the City Council has been promoting key infrastructures such as the Office of Citizen Science [20] and the Municipal Data Office [21], as well as the first Science Biennial to be held in February 2019 [22]. On the other hand, citizen science projects abound from academia and/or research and social innovation entities. Starting from this base and adding the possibilities of Decidim as a free and open platform to articulate participation processes, the objective of the 14th Lab Metadecidim seminar is to explore the use of participation technologies in the co-production of public policies guided by citizen science.


Explore the possibilities of the Decidim platform as a device for the creation of public policies guided by citizen science.


  • What are the main potentialities and risks of using citizen science models for the generation of public policies?
  • How can Decidim provide tools for citizen participation for the co-production of public policies supported by citizen science processes?
  • What functionalities of Decidim would facilitate the different phases of a citizen science project?
  • What needs of research communities are not covered by the current (or developing) functionalities of Decidim?
  • How can Decidim dynamize and provide the participating communities with communication, coordination and decision-making mechanisms?
  • What other free digital tools are of interest in the context of citizen science and should be integrated in Decidim?
  • What are the limits of digital participation in citizen science projects? How can Decidim take advantage of these limits? How can Decidim strengthen the connection between digital and face-to-face?


[1] Ciencia en el Parlamento (2018) ¿En qué consiste el asesoramiento científico independiente al poder legislativo?
[2] Consell Assessor del Parlament sobre Ciència i Tecnologia (CAPCIT)
[3] Büro für Technikfolgen-Abschätzung beim Deutschen Bundestag (TAB)
[4] Office parlementaire d'évaluation des choix scientifiques et technologiques
[5] POST - Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology
[6] European Parliament, Science and Technology Options Assessment
[7] Etalab - Direction interministérielle du numérique et du système d'information et de communication de l'Etat
[8] Policy Lab - GOV.UK
[9] U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO)
[10] Weingart, P. (1999). Scientific expertise and political accountability: paradoxes of science in politics. Science and public policy, 26(3), 151-161.
[11] Bennesia, A., Funtowicz, S., Giampietro, M. Guimaraes Pereira, A., Ravetz, J. Saltelli, A., Strand, R. and van der Sluijs, J.P. 2016. The Rightful Place of Science: Science on the Verge. Tempe, AZ: Consortium for Science, Policy & Outcomes.
[12] Jasanoff, S. 2011. Designs on Nature Science and Democracy in Europe and the United States. Princeton University Press, Princeton.
[13] Funtowicz, S. and Strand, R. 2007. Models of Science and Policy. In Biosafety First: Holistic Approaches to Risk and Uncertainty in Genetic Engineering and Genetically Modified Organisms; Traavik, T. and Lim, L.C. (eds.); Tapir Academic Press, Trondheim.
[14] Walker, W.E., Harremos, P., Rotmans, J., Sluijs, J.P. van der, Asselt, M.B.A. van, Janssen, P., Krauss, M.P.K. von, 2003. Defining Uncertainty: A Conceptual Basis for Uncertainty Management in Model-Based Decision Support. Integrated Assessment 4, 5-17.
[15] Subirats, J. (2014). Políticas Urbanas e Innovación Social. Entre la Coproducción y la Nueva Institucionalidad. Prácticas Significativas en España. Ponencia presentada en el encuentro Bilbao Biskaia Architecture, 24 al 26 de septiembre, Bilbao, España.
[16] Zurbriggen, C., & Lago, M. G. (2014). Innovación y co-creación. Nuevos desafíos para las políticas públicas. Revista de Gestión Pública, 3(2), 329-361.
[17] Serrano Sanz, F., Holocher-Ertl, T., Kieslinger, B., Sanz García, F., & Silva, C. G. (2014). White paper on citizen science for Europe. Bruxelles, Commission européenne.
[18] Senabre, E., Perelló, J., & Ferrán Ferrer, N. (2018). Diseño participativo de experimentos de ciencia ciudadana.
[19] Fuster, M., & Subirats, J. (2013). Gobierno abierto y políticas públicas. Los dilemas de un proceso inevitable, en Revista TELOS (Cuadernos de Comunicación e Innovación), ISSN: 0213-084X.
[20] Oficina de Ciència Ciutadana - Ajuntament de Barcelona
[21] Oficina Municipal de Dades - Ajuntament de Barcelona
[22] Europa Press (2018). Barcelona celebrará la primera Biennal de Ciencia en febrero de 2019


Más información

+Info e Inscripciones aquí

PARTE I. INSPIRACIÓN  [ 10:00 - 11:30]

Presentación de la sesión.


  • Marius Boada, Oficina Municipal de Dades - Ajuntament de Barcelona
  • Elisabetta Broglio, Oficina de Ciència Ciutadana - Ajuntament de Barcelona
  • Josep Perelló, OpenSystems - Universitat de Barcelona
  • Nora Salas Seoane - Fundacion Ibercivis

Debate colectivo con fila cero:

  • Laia Forné, Ajuntament de Barcelona
  • Enric Senabre, Dimmons - IN3/UOC
  • Mara Balestrini, Ideas for Change
  • Ramón Sangüesa, myData
  • Concepción de Linares, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
  • Xose Quiroga, Hangar (IMVEC)
  • Julià Vicens, OpenSystems - Universitat de Barcelona
  • Oleguer Sagarra, Dribia
  • Narcís Prat, Universitat de Barcelona
  • Laia Sánchez, Citilab
  • Yuni Salazar, iGOP - Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
PAUSA  [ 11:30 - 12:00]
PARTE II. CO-CREACIÓN EN COMÚN  [ 12:00 - 14:00]

Grupos de trabajo

Plain text

This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Do you really hate Spam?
Answer this question to verify that you are not a spam robot.