Where do these guidelines come from?

The guidelines presented here are the outcome of the EU research project CONSIDER (Civil Society Organisations in Designing Research Governance). The project ran from 02/2012 to 01/2015. The project website containing more detail on consortium, activities and deliverables is available here: www.consider-project.eu.

The CONSIDER project was devised in response to a funding call by the EU's Science in Society work programme as part of the 7th Framework Programme. It was based on the recognition that there are increasing calls to include CSOs in research but relatively little knowledge of how such integration works.

CONSIDER undertook a number of theoretical and empirical investigations, including a literature review on CSOs in research, a survey of all FP7 projects and 32 in-depth case studies of research projects including CSOs, covering more thatn 100 interviews in addition to a large amount of documents. In parallel it undertook a number of outreach activities to CSOs and other stakeholders. On the basis of all of these activities, the project proposed a model of CSO participation in research that served as the starting point of the collection of guidelines.

The guidelines are the outcome of a collective effort of the project consortium and draw on a wide range of sources including the CONSIDER model, case studies and interviews as well as a review of prior research and guidelines in the area.

The guidelines are broken down into those for different stakeholders, notably the stakeholders that the consortium felt are most likely to have an influence on CSO integration into research and its success.

Overall, the CONSIDER consortium hopes that these guidelines will find their way into policy and practice of CSO participation and thereby support the various European and national stakeholders in better understanding, planning and implementing such work.