Embracing Change: Highlights from the ECSA 2024 Conference

Participants of the Estonian National Copyright Workshop

The EODOPEN team joined the amazing atmosphere of the 5th European Citizen Science Association (ECSA) conference, held in Vienna, Austria, from April 3rd to 6th. As active participants in one of Europe's premier citizen science events, we seized the opportunity to engage with fellow citizen science enthusiasts, scientists, policymakers, and stakeholders, showcasing EODOPEN's engagement practices and project outcomes.

Themed 'Change', this year's ECSA conference delved into the dynamics of change in our rapidly evolving world. The conference aimed to explore various perspectives within the context of citizen science and participatory research. Attendees discussed active, transformative changes, as well as the role of citizen science in observing and monitoring changes across diverse disciplines, including libraries.

The digitization has brought wide-ranging changes in how knowledge is accessed and disseminated. Libraries, serving as facilitators of this transformation, play an active role in engaging communities in the selection, digitization, and dissemination processes. The EODOPEN project, by making digitally hidden collections of the 20th and 21st centuries accessible to the public, has made significant changes to the library community and beyond. Addressing rights clearance questions, EODOPEN ensures inclusivity and accessibility to digital knowledge resources.

During the final day of the conference, the EODOPEN team participated in Citizen Science Day at the Natural History Museum, where we had the privilege to showcase our public engagement methods and project outcomes to a diverse audience. From locals to tourists and from young to old, we welcomed hundreds of attendees to explore the digital world of European Libraries at the Projects’ Marketplace. Our Public Engagement Test garnered over 100 responses, and we engaged in enlightening conversations with close to 500 visitors. Their interest in our activities, particularly in digitizing books, was palpable.

In the Marketplace, we initiated discussions on EODOPEN's engagement with the European public and the methods employed to encourage citizen participation. Our Public Engagement Test provided visitors with insights into suitable engagement methods, fostering interactive involvement and generating valuable feedback. The University of Tartu Library's visualization of the concept "Pick your Public Engagement Fruit" further enriched the dialogue, offering examples from EODOPEN partner libraries.

In summary, our participation in the ECSA 2024 conference underscored our commitment to embracing change and leveraging citizen science to drive positive transformations in the library landscape and beyond.

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Public Engagement Test

Bookmarks with methods and good practices