SensJus: Citizen sensing as a source of evidence in litigation and as a tool for environmental mediation

SensJus: Citizen sensing as a source of evidence in litigation and as a tool for environmental mediation

Since June 2020 the SensJus project’s website is online! 

You can find the website at this link https://sensingforjustice.webnode.it/

SansJus stands for “Sensing for Justice”. The project was born after a landmark court decision released in Texas, on June 27th 2019, in which a judge found the petrochemical company Formosa Plastics Corporation, liable for violating the Clean Water Act because of plastic discharge into local waters. The case was brought by a civic group based in part on citizen sensed-evidence which involved volunteer observations performed over years. This practice entailing grassroots-driven environmental monitoring could be qualified as ‘Citizen Science’ and, more specifically, ‘Citizen Sensing’. The contamination could not be proved through existing data held by competent authorities since the company never filed any record of pollution with the competent authority. Rather, the monitoring and data collection was almost entirely conducted by local residents. 

The key objective of the Sensing for Justice project is to fill the knowledge gap to avoid a possible scientific and legislative vacuum and provide newly required research capacity in the EU. The research will be hosted by the European Commission Joint Research Centre, currently the leading actor in the research on Citizen Science for environmental monitoring and reporting, which will allow us to play a crucial role in the enactment of measures to release Citizen Science for litigation and mediation’s potential across the EU.

Nowadays it is essential to redefine Citizen Sensing as a manifestation of the broader Citizen Science practice having a potential source of evidence acceptable in environmental litigation, as an exercise of the right to contribute to environmental information and even as a method to foster environmental mediation.

Give a look to SensJus website to discover the news and upcoming actions of the project!

https://sensingforjustice.webnode.it/project-news/

Urban Science for City Challenges – City Science Initiative

Urban Science for City Challenges – City Science Initiative

The City Science Initiative aims to strengthen how science and research can help address the urban challenges and to develop a structured approach to evidence-informed policy-making at cities’ level. 

Recently, the report reflecting on the CSI pilot phase has been finalized and published, by the name of ‘City Science for Urban Challenges’. The report of the mission board for climate-neutral and smart cities is accessible through this link.

“The introduction of a Climate City Mission is a radical new way of achieving climate neutrality – and of doing so faster, by 2030. The Mission aims to promote system innovation across the value chain of city investment, targeting multiple sectors such as governance, transport, energy, construction and recycling, with support from powerful digital technologies. As such, it requires a change in regulations, approaches and instruments combined with the willingness to go beyond existing schemes and habits. The Mission also demands a change of attitude towards practical aspects of implementation, but also as concerns people and organisations working together: citizens, local governments, central and regional governments, and European institutions. We expect citizens, city administrations and political leaders to show commitment, imagination and determination. We expect you to implement this Mission with the same determination as the Americans did with their Moonshot. The climate minded transformation of cities goes far beyond the idea of the Man on the Moon. This is The Mission of our times!” (Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz, Chair of the Mission Board for Climate Neutral and Smart Cities)