Back to overview

“Citizen Science”? Rethinking Science and Public Participation

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Strasser Bruno J., Baudry Jérôme, Mahr Dana, Sanchez Gabriela, Tancoigne Elise,
Project The Rise of Citizen Science: Rethinking Public Participation in Science
Show all

Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal Science & Technology Studies
Title of proceedings Science & Technology Studies


Since the late twentieth century, “citizen science” has become an increasingly fashionable label for a growing number of participatory research activities. This paper situates the origins and rise of the term “citizen science” and offers a new framework to better understand the diversity of epistemic practices involved in these participatory projects. It contextualises “citizen science” within the broader history of public participation in science and analyses critically the current promises — democratisation, education, discoveries — emerging within the “citizen science” discourse. Finally, it maps a number of historical, political, and social questions for future research in the critical studies of “citizen science”.