Socientize Evaluation Plan
The evaluation plan sets the basis for the further activities related to assessing the project’s achievements and potential impact. Socientize aims to advance the concept of citizen science, which can be understood as a process of involving the general public in scientific processes. A set of concrete activities from the development of a central portal that offers access to a series of experiments for citizens to specific targeted dissemination and networking activities will be conducted to reach this aim.
In order to monitor the success of the project objectives and assess their potential impact a framework has been developed based on three axes, namely, the target group, the expected output and the means of verification or methods of measurement. The target groups are evaluated on three levels, the first level covers the internal perspective of project participants and users of the Socientize services, the second level gives an expert view from the external advisory board and other related experts and the third level integrates the external perspective of people addressed via broader dissemination means, such as events.
The expected output has been defined along seven core objectives related to the impact that have been developed in a collaborative process within the consortium. After a joint weighting exercise these objectives were transferred into specific questions to be addressed during evaluation. For each of the objectives a certain set of indicators has been defined.
Regarding the measurement of the indicators a set of qualitative and quantitative methods are applied. The evaluation instruments include focus group discussions as well as questionnaires and structured interviews. In addition, monitoring data collected continuously during the project execution will feed into the assessment process. As common in innovative projects Socientize is also facing a series of risks, such as the complexity of certain technologies that need to be considered.
Finally the results of this evaluation will be transferred into a draft white paper first and later on towards the end of the project result in the final version of the white paper. This white paper is intended to give recommendations for future implementations of citizen science based on the experience in Socientize.