An innovative hybrid conceptual and methodological participatory approach combining elements from:


  • participatory action research

  • citizen engagement

  • deliberative will formation

  • crowdsourcing

  • theory-based stakeholder evaluation

Citizen engagement

• Reconvened Focus Groups, 3 at each demonstration site (students, with teachers, organisational staff).

• Each group will meet periodically (in total up to 6 times)

• Stimulus materials and problem structuring methods to promote deliberation and reflection 

• The participants will keep diaries during the interval periods.  

• Low Carbon Committees will be established at each demonstration site consisting of students, teachers, organisational staff, and representatives from the wider educational community, such as public institutions and NGOs.

• Deliberative Workshops will facilitates and promotes deep reflection, invites participants to challenge their own views and assumptions, and fosters the elaboration of views and arguments in a collaborative way.

• Deliberative workshops usually consist of three stages: information sharing, dialogue, and deliberation.  

• Dialogue and deliberation will be facilitated among all actors with the ultimate aim of fostering transformational change towards sustainable development.

Citizen science

•Citizen science is the practice of public participation and collaboration in scientific research to increase scientific knowledge. Through citizen science, people share and contribute to data monitoring and collection programs.

•ECF4CLIM will apply the principles of citizen science, thereby contributing to the acquisition of skills and knowledge by generating local data, engaging citizens in concrete action, raising awareness, and empowering people to adopt new ways of behaviour in favour of climate protection and sustainable development.

•ECF4CLIM envisages a co-creative and participatory approach, which entails co-designing the research questions and methods jointly by the project team and the involved citizens and targeted at jointly identified and conceptualised real-world problems


•Crowdsourcing will engender a collective meaning-making process by engaging a large, international group of students, parents, teachers and experts in education, with a view to harnessing their contribution towards elaborating an initial ECF.

•The participatory crowdsourcing incorporated tool will help civic opinion on conceptualising the competences in climate change and sustainable development.

•This will ensure the relevance of the competences defined in the ECF to the involved communities, and fosters ownership of the outcomes amongst the educational community.

•ECF4CLIM will pay special attention to the opinion and experiential expertise of under-represented communities such as people from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds, regions with lower GDP, and minority ethnic and indigenous communities

Multi-criteria analysis of the environmental performance

•Focused the following environmental sectors: transport, green procurement, green spaces, indoor air quality, energy, water and waste.

•These environmental sectors are assessed via key performance indicators (KPIs), obtained through technical assessments, IoT solutions and questionnaire-based behaviour surveys at the selected educational establishments.

•Technical assessments are based on inspections and check-list sheets to describe building characteristics, equipment, activities, behaviours, occupation profiles and resource consumption at the premises.

•IoT solutions will be applied to conduct on-side measurements of energy and water consumption, indoor air quality, and comfort parameters.

•On-line surveys will be carried out to monitor the performance of the selected educational communities in terms of individual and collective behaviour, such as transport patterns and daily habits and practices in the environmental areas evaluated.

Life Cycle Assessment

• Evaluation of the environmental impacts occurring throughout the life cycle of a system, process or product, from extraction of raw materials, through processing, manufacturing, transportation and distribution, use, reuse, recycling and final disposal.

• LCA includes four consecutive phases in an iterative process: i) definition of objective and scope of the analysis; ii) inventory analysis; iii) impact assessment and iv) interpretation of results.

• This methodology can be applied to the activities implemented in the educational establishments through the characterisation of the educational system, identification of the main energy and material inputs and outputs involved, and collection of data indicating the performance of the establishments.

• The main input data required for the characterisation of the educational activities concern aspects such as the consumption of electricity, fuels, and water, the amount of green spaces in operation and maintenance of buildings and infrastructure, as well as the quantities and types of materials required for the educational activity such as books, computers, office equipment, as well as data related to daily commuting to the premises. 

Energy efficiency calculations in buildings

•The basis for any energy renovation of a public building is energy audit. It helps to estimate the potential savings and costs associated with renovation and to prioritise investments.

• A toolkit (Dynamic building energy performance tool and Maps for building energy retrofitting proposals) will be used to support auditing and the renovation of buildings to improve their energy efficiency.

•A dynamic energy building performance tool will be developed to evaluate the energy saving potentials achieved by the implementation of different retrofitting measures in schools.  This tool gathers the initial building information, queries the simulation database available and quantifies the retrofitting percentage reached by the measure selected. The use of this tool allows estimating the energy response of a representative classroom when different retrofitting measures are implemented.

•Seasonal maps will be developed to highlight the thermal comfort zone inside a building and different energy efficiency measures to achieve this thermal neutrality. These maps are based on the Givoni bioclimatic charts and use, as inlet information, local natural resources.  The use of these charts allows quantifying the climate severity and predicting whether passive heating or cooling measures are likely to improve thermal comfort in a building. The use of the toolkit by technical and no-technical staff involved in the process of building renovation can inspire help these actors to adopt new technical solutions to renovation.