CCRI recruit new research assistant for new ‘CaST’ project

CCRI recruits a new research assistant to work on co-designing a citizen science approach for achieving integrated catchment management. 

We are pleased to introduce our newest team member, Ben Shread-Hewitt, who has previously worked as a freelance climate change researcher. Ben has joined the CCRI as a research assistant, and will be working alongside Charlotte Chivers, Chris Short, and Jane Mills on a newly launched project, ‘Catchment Systems Thinking’ (CaST). The aim of CaST is to create a step-change in the contribution of citizen science within integrated catchment management (ICM). Ecosystems services are often a key part of this, potentially leading to both natural and societal benefits. During this project, we will give thought to a full range of management approaches when considering how a citizen science monitoring framework could contribute to ICM and further enhance the evidence-base that underpins this approach. 

CaST also provides an opportunity to showcase how integrating co-design into the development of a citizen science project prior to its launch will likely result in a greater uptake and more meaningful engagement from stakeholders. Our involvement, as social scientists, offers a strong opportunity to build long-lasting relationships between stakeholders alongside developing a greater understanding of their needs and how they can contribute to integrated catchment management through citizen science approaches.  During this project, the CCRI will work closely with local land managers and other relevant stakeholders, including Southern Water representatives, local NGOs, farm advisors, and others to be identified during a stakeholder mapping exercise. Through engaging with these stakeholders on repeated occasions, we will ensure that the project is truly co-researched and co-designed.