GROW Observatory reached the end of its Horizon 2020 funding period on 31 October 2019. The project continues through community groups who have decided to remain active, an extension of GROW applications and cloud services to enable collection of data, and through a follow-on project WeObserve.
On this page are details of GROW activities from November 2019, as well as resources and funding opportunities that you might like to explore with your community and local networks.
Follow us on Twitter and Facebook
Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for information on upcoming opportunities and activities. GROW also has communities on Facebook and Instagram, and many videos on YouTube and stories on Medium.
How can I get involved with GROW from November 2019?
Online Learning: ‘Citizen Science Projects – How to Make a Difference’
18 Nov 2019 for 4 weeks and again in September 2020
This online course (MOOC) bring best practices on how to build your own Citizen Observatory from the GROW Observatory, Groundtruth 2.0, Scent, Landsense. The next free online course is now open for enrollment. Discover and learn about citizen science projects around the world. You’ll also find out how to design and lead a project, including barriers such as interpret the data collected and use it to educate others about environmental concerns.
WeObserve Open Data Challenge
Launching 31 March 2020
GROW data is being released for an online data challenge and award tender. The call is open to individuals and teams, and will open access environmental data from H2020 Citizens Observatories including GROW, Scent, Landsense and Groundtruth 2.0 with a focus on creating innovation concepts and demonstrations for social good.
Use the GROW Observatory app to improve your growing
Our app connects to the Edible Plant Database for you to discover which crops to plant and when, and also when harvest in your local area.
GROW Planting Calendars Facebook Group
Join our active community which is continuing to gather and share information on when you plant and harvest your crops, with an approximate location. See our pinned post for details.
GROW Community Champions Facebook Group
A private group for community champions who have led GROW Places who deployed sensors during the funded project and are interested to continue to meet and take part.
During the funded project GROW had two primary activities called Missions – the Changing Climate mission took place across 24 GROW Places, and the Living Soils mission was for anyone, anywhere.
Changing Climate Mission
In the Changing Climate mission, communities deployed thousands of soil sensors in 24 GROW Places, which are focus areas in different climatic zones across Europe. The citizens received a free soil moisture sensor and own the data they create. These data are used to validate soil moisture readings taken by European Space Agency satellites and to inform decisions by food growers and policy makers, helping society adapt to extreme climate events. We focused the sensors in a limited number of areas because a high density of measurements is the most valuable to science and there is a limited supply of the low cost soil sensor we are using in GROW.
Living Soils Mission
In this mission participants collaborated to improve, share and use information on growing practices which regenerate soils. In the GROW Experiment growers around Europe conducted a trial of regenerative growing techniques to provide scientific validation. Growers shared their planting calendars to help us compile a comprehensive, location-specific list of planting dates for Europe. People also learned about soil, growing and regenerative growing practices through free online courses.
Learning and Education
Thousands of people have participated in GROW’s Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) which delivered 19 weeks of social learning from 2017 to 2019. We thoroughly enjoyed engaging with everyone, and people from 182 countries around the world joined our courses. This approach to using MOOCs for Citizen Science training and education was unique and original to GROW and is one we are very proud of.
We created and delivered online courses on GROW themes, including: understanding your soil; how to adopt more sustainable growing practices; sensors and DiY open hardware, how data from GROW Places can be used to understand a changing climate. Our courses can be found on Futurelearn: Citizen Science: From Soil to Sky; Citizen Science: Sensing the World; Citizen Science: Living Soils, Growing Food; Citizen Science: From Data to Action
We’re continuing our courses in WeObserve, find out more and join us!
Resources and Funding Opportunities
GROW Observatory Protocols & Resources
Sensing protocols, and field handbooks
Regenerative food growing practices info pack
Setting up your own growing experiment
Other Citizen Science projects
WeObserve Communities of Practice
EU-Citizen Science: Coordinate, Engage and Create Citizen Science Projects
A database of citizen science projects
Electronic Platform for Adult Learning in Europe (EPALE)
Adult learning programmes