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I-CHANGE actively involves citizens in environmental science, demystifying the field and making it accessible to the wider community. This strategy boosts environmental awareness and fosters sustainable lifestyles and consumption habits.

The recent Genoa Living Lab demonstrates how citizen science can engage the public in environmental monitoring, cultivating a community focused on sustainability.

Monitor on bike - I CHANGE



I-CHANGE is a citizen science initiative that addresses environmental and climate challenges by engaging communities in active environmental monitoring. The project equips citizens with tools, sensors, and knowledge, to involve them in collecting and analysing data to assess the impact of personal and community choices on the environment. Operating through eight Living Labs, including the Genoa Living Lab, I-CHANGE uses a participatory approach, encouraging hands-on participation and developing a deeper understanding of environmental issues.

The project's core lies in empowering individuals and groups to make informed decisions that reduce their environmental footprint, contributing to climate adaptation and mitigation. By involving citizens in the scientific process, I-CHANGE demystifies environmental science, making it accessible to and actionable for the broader community. This approach enhances environmental awareness, while also promoting sustainable lifestyle changes and consumption patterns.

Description of success

The I-CHANGE project has achieved remarkable success through its innovative use of multiple devices for citizen science monitoring, particularly evidenced in the Genoa Living Lab. By using a variety of sensors, such as the MeteoTracker (mobile weather station), the Smart Citizen Science Kit air quality sensor, and on-site weather stations, I-CHANGE addresses various climate-related hazards in a user-friendly manner. This strategic deployment of technology enables the project to connect knowledge about hazards with potential impacts.  As a result, it offers actionable insights and recommendations for citizens to effectively mitigate or adapt to potentially hazardous conditions.

A compelling example of this was demonstrated in Genoa during a week in late August 2023, where a sophisticated interaction between sensors provided a comprehensive understanding of the local urban climate. The MeteoTracker sensor, mounted on a motorbike, revealed significant urban heat island effects with perilously high humidex levels (perceived temperature taking into account the humidity), which highlighted the acute challenges posed by heatwaves. Just days later, the same city centre experienced a severe flash flood event, captured by the on-site weather station, which recorded an extraordinarily high rainfall, underscoring the project's vital role in real-time environmental monitoring and hazard assessment.

I-CHANGE charts


  • The use of various sensors like the MeteoTracker and the Smart Citizen Science Kit air quality sensor across eight Living Labs, particularly in Genoa, showcases I-CHANGE's innovative approach to environmental monitoring.
  • The project's ability to capture and analyse different climate-related hazards in real-time provides valuable insights into phenomena such as urban heat islands, flash floods, and air quality issues.
  • I-CHANGE's participatory approach has successfully engaged citizens in the scientific process, empowering them with the knowledge and tools to actively monitor their environment and make informed decisions.
  • The creation of long-lasting Sustainability Competence Teams (SCTs) and Committees (SCCs) within the Living Labs, ensured sustained community engagement and action towards environmental monitoring and sustainability.
  • The project's success in Genoa has inspired educational ventures, such as a laboratory activity at the Festival of Science 2023, further extending its reach and impact by engaging a broader audience in climate science and sustainability issues.


Thanks to the success of citizen scientists collecting meteorological and climatological data alongside their day-to-day activities, I-CHANGE was inspired to host a Living Laboratory at the Genoa Science Festival 2023. They worked with attendees, sharing ideas on how data could be collected. They also set up their Zero Emission City game where players aim to reduce the carbon footprint of their citizens.


The I-CHANGE project has significantly increased community involvement in environmental monitoring in Genoa, showcasing the effectiveness of citizen science. By providing a variety of sensors to citizens, the project has enabled detailed observation of climate-related events, such as heatwaves and flash floods. This direct involvement has increased environmental awareness and encouraged the community to engage in sustainable practices. I-CHANGE has thus demonstrated a practical model for using citizen science to enhance environmental monitoring and community action towards climate adaptation and mitigation goals.


The Living Labs, which are part of the meteorological toolkit, raised environmental awareness amongst citizens, as well as their understanding of climate science and the effects of climate change. Engaging people directly through their involvement in collecting data enhances their understanding and encourages them to adjust their lifestyle to make more sustainable choices. However, the activities are hands-on and require a lot of time to be successful. There is a risk that some citizen scientists may become disengaged throughout the timeline of the Living Lab. That being said, the successes experienced by the I-CHANGE project in Genoa demonstrate the potential citizen data collection has to play a role in involving the community in climate monitoring.

Other information

Going forward, I-CHANGE will continue their important monitoring work and maintain their citizen science sensor network. You can keep up to date with their real-time MeteoTracker data and weather stations online, as well as follow the progress of their Smart Citizen Kit.

I-CHANGE zero emissions city photo

Project details

Project name
Working group
Knowledge and citizens

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