Informed Consent for Participants


Please note that you can only participate if you are:

  • 16 – 29 years living in Austria, Denmark, Hungary, Norway, Spain, Sweden or the UK.
  • 18 – 29 years living in Italy or Lithuania

Minors belonging to the YouCount project aged 13-15 years and 13-17 years in Italy and Lithuania can only participate in cooperation with the YouCount researchers and after provided written parental/guardian consent.
Are you in doubt? Please ask your local YouCount researcher Julie Ridley (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or the project coordinator Reidun Norvoll (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Welcome to the YouCount project!

You are invited to take part in the YouCount project as a young citizen scientist exploring social inclusion for young people! We would here like to provide you with information about the project, who can participate and what the participation will involve.

Purpose of YouCount and the app study

The YouCount App study is part of the larger YouCount project founded by the European Commission and running from February 2021 to January 2024.

The aim of the YouCount project is to develop new knowledge and innovations to increase the social inclusion of youth through youth citizen social science where young people participate as young citizen scientists (co-researchers). The young citizen scientists work together with professional researchers in teams and/or supply observations of their experiences with social inclusion in their daily life in the YouCount app.

The YouCount project includes local projects with young people in nine European countries – Austria, Denmark, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and the UK – focusing on different aspects of social inclusion such as opportunities for social participation in social/work life, sense of social belonging to a place or other people, or active citizenship through the ability to influence policymaking or your community.

In the project, we use many different data collection methods such as interviews and workshops involving smaller groups of young people. In addition, we have created the “YouCount app” together with youths and the EU based SPOTTERON Citizen Science platform ( who is also a project partner. The App study can strengthen the voices of young people, help us to understand more about the possibilities and challenges young people face and to find possible solutions in each country as well as across Europe.

You can find more information about YouCount on the project’s website: ☛ YouCount - Social Citizen Science (

Why are you asked to participate?

Because you are between 13 and 29 years old and have shown interest in expressing your views and experiences with social inclusion in the YouCount project in one of the nine European countries, or by opening the YouCount App.

Who can participate in the app study?

We invite young people aged 13-29 to take part in the project. Due to legal restrictions for research differing between the nine participating European countries, the following groups are invited:

  • Group 1: youth between 16- and 29-years old living in Austria, Denmark, Hungary, Norway, Spain, Sweden, or the UK.
  • Group 2: youth between 18- and 29-years old living in Italy or Lithuania.

If you are 13-15 years old in group 1 or 13-17 years in group 2, you can only participate in the app study in agreement with the responsible researcher Julie Ridley (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and if you present a written parental/guardian consent including the e-mail address you use to sign up to the platform. The e-mail address is only because we need to be able to link parents and the youth to document the consent. You can still keep the pseudonym you choose to use in the app to yourself.

Who is responsible for the research project?

The project involves 11 partners from the nine countries in Europe. Oslo Metropolitan University (OsloMet) is coordinator and responsible for the whole project and the app- study in a joint responsibility agreement with the partners.

The other partners are the following:

  • The University of Central Lancashire (UK)
  • Vetenskap & Allmänhet (Sweden)
  • Södertörn University Stockholm (Sweden)
  • Universität Wien (Austria)
  • ESSRG Environmental Social Science Research Group (Hungary)
  • Aalborg University (Denmark)
  • Kaunas University of Technology (Lithuania)
  • Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici, Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II (Italy)
  • Foundation Deusto (Spain)
  • SPOTTERON Citizen Science Platform

The first ten partners are responsible for the research and processing of data. SPOTTERON is only processing the project-specific data collected in the YouCount app on behalf of the consortium, except from the data you provided when signing up to the SPOTTERON platform, for which SPOTTERON has their own legal basis for processing (ref. their Terms of Use).

What does participation involve for you?

First, you sign up to the SPOTTERON platform with your country, date-of-birth, e-mail account and self- made username (pseudonym). The platform is available in Apple’s app store, Google Play, or via the web-application on the YouCount website. In the project app, you need to choose a pseudonym as username. If you like, you can make a non-identifiable image linked to your profile but remember that it must not show your face or in any other way reveal your or others’ identity.

Then, you can use the App to spot the place you are at the interactive map and record your observations, experiences and opportunities related to social inclusion for young people, answer questions and supply images and text. Moreover, you can give feedback to other participating youths and engage in discussions with them. You may also be invited to participate in future studies in the YouCount project through the app. There are also opportunities to make some statistical analysis for all app users.

However, you can decide how much information you share. There are possibilities to revoke access to the location service via your device, and to hide spots, location, and observations for the public in the app. You can also choose to go to another public place and provide your comments from there.

The data you provide will be used by the local and Europe-based research teams to make statistics or content analyses of the text to learn more about positive drivers of social inclusion for young people and possible solutions to challenges for youths.

What are the risks and benefits of participation?

By participating in the App study, you can learn more about social inclusion and the experiences of other young people. You also get the opportunity to voice your own experiences and to participate in other parts of the project.

No physical, social, economic, psychological or legal harm is anticipated in this research.

Please note that the YouCount app is an interactive open social media app. Therefore, please think carefully about the kind of information that you submit about yourself or others and be aware that the data may be reused by others. As for all social media platforms, there may be a risk of improper or unpleasant content. The researchers will therefore constantly monitor the app during the project period. In addition, you can always report occurrences either in the app itself (by flagging or blocking other users or content). Please always get in contact with the project’s research team if you experience any misconduct.

BUT: If you do not use your real name, but a secret pseudonym, and do not upload personal information making you directly or indirectly recognisable, the other users of the app will not know your identity.

Participation is voluntary

Participation in the project is completely voluntary. You can freely choose if, when and how you want to contribute. You can always choose yourself whether you want to share or hide map coordinates, or completely hide a contribution from others. This way, only administrator and moderator users can see your uploaded spot and content.

You can also easily withdraw from the study by removing your user account or personal data from the app and ask your local researcher to delete possibly exported personal data from the project’s research database. Your personal data will consequently be deleted from the SPOTTERON database at the next data update. There will be no negative consequences for you if you choose not to participate or later decide to withdraw.

How will the data be handled?

We will only use your personal data for the purpose(s) specified in this information letter. We will process your personal data confidentially and in accordance with data protection legislation (the General Data Protection Regulation and Personal Data Act called GDPR).

Only SPOTTERON will have access to and store your personal name, date of birth and e-mail account. The personal data you provided for your user account when signing up to the platform will be stored securely at the platform. The research teams will only have access to pseudonymised data.

Each partner institution will appoint one researcher that will be responsible to export (copy) pseudonymised data files from the SPOTTERON platform. The copied data files will be stored in a confidential and secure way at the responsible institution UCLan using password protected computer systems. The data will be processed and analysed by the local research team and the cross-case research team comprising researchers from EU countries, and two countries outside EU (Norway and the UK).

Parts of the pseudonymised data (statistics, images, and text field) will be used in publications and presentations, and as information to the public without disclosing your identity.

What will happen to your personal data at the end of the research project?

To allow others to learn from the project and how an app for citizen social science can look like, the app will be open for the public at the SPOTTERON platform until 31 December 2024. Then SPOTTERON will delete the content and personal user information within 14 days from the app.

You are welcome to participate in other Citizen Science projects with your user account, available on the platform. If you decide to delete your user account data, you can do that anytime directly within the YouCount App without any delay. To do so, navigate to the settings panel via the main menu, where you can find the interface for a complete deletion of your personal data. After entering your password and confirmation, all data is instantly erased. This is permanent and cannot be reversed.

When the project ends, the researchers will anonymise all the data for future analysis and publications.

What gives us the right to process your personal data?

We will process your personal data based on your consent. In the UK the lawful basis for processing personal data for research purposes will be that the processing is necessary for a task carried out in the public interest (Article 6(1)(e) UK GDPR).

Based on an agreement with OsloMet, Data Protection Services (Sikt) has assessed that the processing of personal data in this project is in accordance with data protection legislation.

Your rights

As long as you can be identified in the collected data, you have the right to:

  • access your personal data that is being processed
  • request that your personal data is deleted
  • request that incorrect personal data is corrected/rectified
  • receive a copy of your personal data (data portability), and
  • Send a complaint to the Information Commissioner's Office regarding the processing of your child´s personal data by calling 0303 123 1113

Where can I find out more?

The responsible person for the research project in Preston is Julie Ridley and you can ask her for more information on 01772 203402 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. If you are unhappy, or if there is a problem, please feel free to let us know by contacting Julie Ridley and we will try to help. If you remain unhappy or have a complaint which you feel you cannot come to us with, then please contact the Ethics, Integrity and Governance Unit at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


  • Researcher Ingar Brattbakk: mobile phone: + 91601129, e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Coordinator: Reidun Norvoll: mobile phone: + 47 98245145, e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Data protection officer: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Yours sincerely,
Reidun Norvoll (Coordinator, OsloMet), Julie Ridley (Project Leader (UCLan)


  • You have received and understood information about the project YouCount and the YouCount app- study and have been given the opportunity to ask questions.
  • As part of downloading and registering as user on the YouCount app, you are agreeing to the terms above.
  • You also consent to acknowledge that you are either 16 years of age or older (or 18 years and living in Italy or Lithuania). Or, if you are a minor, that you have contacted the local researcher and provided written parental/guardian consent before participating.
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We publish quarterly updates on our work in a Newsletter that you can receive directly in your inbox. With every Newsletter, you learn more about YouCount and the people behind the project. We travel to the different cases and introduce you to young citizen scientists and other project members in each issue. Our Newsletter informs you about upcoming events and updates you on events you might have missed. Don’t miss out!


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european unionYouCount is funded by the European Commission under Horizon 2020, GA No.101005931