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Engage your Community

Design your Communications

One of the first steps in communication is deciding who you want to tell about your project. A general answer like ‘I want to tell the general public about my amazing citizen science project’ won’t really get you there. For starters, there is no such thing as the general public or an average person. We are all different people, who have different opinions, different skills and interests, and values and live in different communities.   

Take a moment to consider who would be interested in your project (your participants and stakeholders) and then think about ways that you can contact them. Also consider who can help you promote your project and grow your audience. 

Consider any risks

Are there any sensitivities around your project? Have there been other similar projects or previous negative or perceived to be negative situations which could have impacted trust and credibility?  Risk communication can be a tricky thing but it’s something you shouldn’t ignore. So, make a list of what could go wrong, and if it does, identify how you could mitigate its impact on your project through communication. This should feed into your overall risk register discussed in the map your project timeline section.

Resources for communication planning

There are a number of ways you can plan your communications. As long as you consider your participants and stakeholders when designing the type, format and frequency of communication then you are on the right track.

To get you started you can use the following resources to help you: