GEOVACUI: citizen science and cooperation initiatives against depopulation in rural areas are a Citizen Science project, a continuation of the work initiated in the GEOVACUI project: rural societies in empty territories and their productive potential.
This project seeks to know the initiatives that favor or hinder the fixation of population in Spanish rural areas and to identify the defining elements of good practices. In this way, a debate is opened to deepen, in a collaborative way, the knowledge of the causes, consequences, problems and opportunities linked to the situation of depopulation in these areas, and citizen participation in research activities is stimulated, in order to promote scientific culture in society.
Its results are materialized in repositories of bibliographic, documentary and good practice materials. In addition, an interactive geo-viewer is available to visualize the collaborative map with the initiatives and a platform for personalized consultation. The project has, as deliverables, documents with the basic elements of good practices and a decalogue of conclusions and recommendations.
The research team is made up of five geographers and an economist from five Spanish public universities, in gender balance, and with extensive experience in the different aspects of the project (rural studies, geoinformatics applications, knowledge dissemination, Citizen Science and SDGs).
To compile cases of good practices, both of a public nature and due to private initiative, aimed at population fixation in rural areas, which tend to strengthen the economic fabric of these spaces, their better habitability or focus on any other positive circumstance in this sense.
To create a diverse, organized and easily accessible repository of shared information and illustrative examples, fed by the protagonist citizens themselves, managers, local administrations, etc.
To delve into the causes, consequences, problems and opportunities linked to the situation of depopulation in rural areas suffering from regressive socioeconomic dynamics, identified by the participants in the previous project, and subsequently compiled and organized by the researchers from the surveys carried out (more than 400).
To open differentiated lines of debate to delve collaboratively into each of these issues, with the task of the researchers being to moderate the debate and feed it with bibliographical references, reports, press releases, etc., specific to each line, to enrich the citizen's perspective and guide the discussion.
To stimulate citizen participation in activities linked to research, with the aim of promoting scientific culture in society, as well as critical awareness based on informed and collaborative reflection (varied synchronous points of view) on a complex and multifactorial phenomenon such as the one discussed here: depopulation in rural areas.
How to participate
Citizen scientists will participate in GEOVACUI by sharing information of interest on cases of good practices aimed at population fixation in rural areas. In addition, it will help to understand the causes, consequences, problems and opportunities linked to the depopulation situation in rural areas suffering from regressive socioeconomic dynamics. Participation through a questionnaire is essential for the construction of the repository of good practices and the collaborative map, as well as the deliverables.