PREP4BLUE is running a spring/summer webinar series titled “Planning for Citizen Participation in Mission Ocean & Waters.” Over five one-hour sessions, participants will learn how to design a project, work package, or programme of activities in alignment with the citizen engagement targets of the EU Mission: Restore Our Ocean and Waters By 2030 (or Mission Ocean). The webinars are designed as bite-sized, targeted sessions that will equip the audience with key information and knowledge of where/how to access more details or expertise. The schedule for the series is below.
The webinar series is aimed primarily at anyone applying for Mission Ocean funding under Horizon Europe. It will also be of interest to current Mission-funded projects, as well as those working on citizen engagement in marine and freshwater-related activities across the NGO, industry, research, community, citizen science groups, and local government sectors.
The European Commission’s ambition in relation to citizen engagement with Mission Ocean falls under a handful of clear themes. Each of the webinars in this series is structured around one of these themes. Overall, the series will equip the audience with the knowledge required to orient project proposals and restoration, anti-pollution, and other related activities towards the Mission’s targets in relation to citizen engagement.
Webinar Series Schedule
Webinar 1: Citizen Participation and Citizen Assemblies for Mission Ocean
Date/time: Wednesday 31st May, 14.00 CEST, Online
This webinar introduces the theme of citizen participation as it relates to Mission Ocean design, policy, and funding.
Participants will be introduced to key theory and methods for encouraging citizen participation in marine and freshwater matters. The webinar will also discuss core requirements of Mission Ocean funding in this area and how they might be integrated into project proposals, such as enabling successful citizen assemblies.
Participants will also be shown where to find more information on all topics related to citizen engagement in Mission Ocean and Horizon Europe Mission Work Programmes.
About the trainer: Dr. Maiken Bjørkan, Nordland Research Institute, Norway
Dr. Maiken Bjørkan is involved in research on various aspects of coastal zone management, with particular focus on the role of knowledge-based management and participation. She is concerned with challenges related to uncertainty and controversies in social issues, such as fishing quotas, land use and sustainable development. Bjørkan specializes in fisheries and aquaculture and is the coordinator of the EU project EmpowerUs.
Webinar 2: Increasing Social Inclusion Through Mission Ocean Projects
Date/time: Thursday 1st June, 12.00 CEST, Online
This webinar will introduce the concept of social inclusion as it relates to Mission Ocean priorities and how projects can build promoting inclusivity into their design, increasing their chances of receiving funding.
Mission policy documents and funding calls specifically reference the need for activities to actively strive for inclusivity in terms of gender, non-coastal peoples, indigenous communities, race, and socioeconomics. By introducing examples of recent projects that have successfully examined, targeted, and increased inclusion in ocean and water-based sustainability initiatives, the webinar will provide details on how to structure a project or work package to increase social inclusion in activities and initiative governance structures. Details of where more information and guidance can be found will also be provided.
About the trainer:
Dr. Patricia McHugh is a Lecturer in Marketing with the University of Galway, Ireland. Patricia’s passion for achieving change and societal impact has led her to spend the last 15 years designing and implementing Stakeholder Engagement Strategies and Co-Creation Toolkits for Environmental Behaviour Change. Patricia’s previous research on European funded-projects SOPHIE, Sea Change and Sea for Society involved designing and implementing inclusive stakeholder engagement processes for coastal development and sustainable transitions. Patricia has published her work in the Journal of Social Marketing, Marine Policy, Environmental Education Research, Frontiers in Marine Science, Social Marketing Quarterly, Journal of Marketing Management and Social Indicators Research.
Webinar 3: Citizen Science to Support Mission Ocean Project Activities
Date/time: Tuesday 6th June, 12.00 CEST, Online
Citizen Science is being increasingly recognised as a means to democratise knowledge creation, for communities to influence policy, and as a rich source of data for research and governmental institutions. Including citizen science groups in data collection, restoration activities and anti-pollution initiatives is a core aim of the European Commission and a central theme of Mission Ocean funding calls.
This webinar will introduce some of the work of marine and freshwater citizen science groups from around Europe and discuss how such groups might be integrated into Mission Ocean project proposals, as well as ocean and freshwater-related activities.
Information on how to use a database of all European marine and freshwater citizen science initiatives will also be provided.
About the trainer: Dr. Jan Seys, Flanders Marine Institute (VLIZ), Belgium
Dr. Jan Seys is the head of Science Communication & spokesperson of the Flanders Marine Institute (VLIZ) since 2000. He chaired the European Marine Board Communications Panel from 2010 till 2017 and is member of UNESCO’s Group of Experts on Ocean Literacy. Trained as a marine biologist, he built up extensive experience in marine education and science communication, including all kinds of public engagement. Dr. Seys is one of the pioneers of the Ocean Literacy movement in Europe, the organizer of the First Conference on Ocean Literacy in Europe (12 October 2012, Bruges) and of the international CommOCEAN 2016 conference on marine science communication. He is a marine citizen science ‘believer’ and practitioner, coordinating two initiatives in Belgium (SeaWatch-B; Big Seashell Survey) and author of several publications on marine citizen science and science communication. He is task-leader on citizen science in the Prep4Blue project and leading the task on public engagement in the North Sea/Baltic Sea region within the Horizon Europe BlueMissionBANOS project.
Webinar 4: Community Based Social Marketing: An Introduction
Date/time: Wednesday 7th June, 17.00 CEST, Online
This webinar will introduce the theory and methods of Community Based Social Marketing (CBSM). Mission Ocean policy documents and Horizon Europe Work Programmes make consistent reference to the necessity of taking a “whole of society” approach and integrating citizen participation into Mission activities at every level. A key aspect of this will be to influence positive behaviour change. For Mission-funded projects, this will need to be done in a disciplined, measurable way.
The cornerstone of sustainable and healthy communities is behaviour change. Sustainability requires that individuals and businesses engage in diverse actions, such as reducing pollution, increasing water and energy efficiency, increasing voluntarism, and protecting native species. Research demonstrates, however, that the traditional approach of using ads, brochures, or websites to encourage behaviour change simply doesn’t work. A new approach, CBSM, is being used effectively by public and private organisations around the globe.
This webinar will take examples of CBSM being used as a tool across marine and freshwater-related initiatives to discuss how integrating this approach into Mission Ocean project proposals will help to achieve the Mission’s ambitious goals in relation to coastal and river ecosystem restoration and pollution elimination, based on a leveraging of citizen activity in support of the Mission.
About the trainer: Dr. Doug McKenzie-Mohr, Community-Based Social Marketing
For over three decades, Dr. Doug McKenzie-Mohr has been working to incorporate scientific knowledge on behavior change into the design and delivery of community programs. He is the founder of community-based social marketing and the author/co-author of three books on the topic. One of these books, “Fostering Sustainable Behavior,” has been recommended by Time Magazine and has become requisite reading for those who deliver programs to protect the environment. Doug is also the author of the Fostering Behavior Change Minute newsletter, which is read weekly by nearly 20,000 subscribers. His work has been featured in the New York Times and he is the recipient of the American Psychological Association’s inaugural award for innovation in environmental psychology and the World Social Marketing conference’s inaugural award for contributions to the field of social marketing. He is a former Professor of Psychology and currently an adjunct professor at the University of Victoria and Royal Roads University in Canada. More than 75,000 program managers have attended workshops on community-based social marketing that he has delivered internationally.
Webinar 5: Working with The European Solidarity Corps for Restoration Initiatives
Date/time: Wednesday 14th June, 12.00 CEST, Online
Increase the scope and impact of restoration and anti-pollution initiatives by teaming up with the European Solidarity Corps (ESC) – a key criteria of the Horizon Europe Mission Ocean Work Programme 2023-2024.
This webinar will introduce the ESC, how it works, how young people can sign up to it and how organisations across Europe can apply for project funding and volunteer assistance through the platform.
Thought will be given to how this process can align with Mission-funded projects and with Mission-relevant activities in general.
About the trainer:
Suzanne Kavanagh is Senior Support and Development Officer, European Solidarity Corps with Léargas, Ireland’s national contact point for the ESC. She has 6 years’ experience of working with the ESC, coordinating funding opportunities to support organisations working with volunteers.