Dimitris Vlachopoulos is the Principal Investigator of the University of Exeter in the project SEEDS. He shared with us his experience in the project.
When we asked him to tell us a few words about his experience in SEEDS, he told us: “We had a great experience with the SEEDS project: this includes positive feedback from the schools, from the teachers, the headteachers of science and of physical education as well. And also, from some parents and stakeholders. So, in general it was a demanding 2 year project that included a co-creation approach which always takes time. It was full in COVID period as well, but in general it was really positive, everything we’ve learned and everything we did. I think in the end once we were all organised and coordinated nicely it was a really good experience with a positive impact to those that it needed most.”
About his experience of working on a project that is driven by teenagers from the ground-up, he said that: “It was brilliant. I mean you get the feedback and the citizen science approach is the unique element of this project which was a steep learning curve for quite a lot of us. As we haven’t seen it before both in terms of focus groups, the qualitative approach and co-creation events. But receiving the approach and the perspective of the actual participants is the unique element of this project and the strongest novelty because it just gives you a different perspective even if you’re a researcher for years or if you are relatively young researcher, as I am or some of my other colleagues were. It was really useful to see this from early on and take it seriously so you can adapt this project in future projects according to the demands and the needs and the voices of the participants.”