Last night, the British Science Association shared an award with partner, EDF Energy, to recognise the success of our citizen science project from 2014, the Big Bumblebee Discovery.

The project won the award for Charity Partnership (Short-term) at the annual Business Charity Awards ceremony held in London last night. The judges praised the project for engaging such a large number of young people in science, adding that it was the result of “an outstanding partnership between a company and a charity that has lasted up to a year and a half”.

The Big Bumblebee Discovery ran over the summer of 2014, where close to 30,000 schoolchildren took part by counting the numbers of different species of bumblebee in a range of environments across the UK.

The project was led by the research of ecologists, Dr Helen Roy and Dr Michael Pocock, at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH). The experiment aimed to address the question “how is the diversity and abundance of bumblebees influenced by the surrounding landscape at multiple scales?”

Both Michael and Helen analysed the data collected and the resulting paper will be published in a peer review journal later this year.

The British Science Association would especially like to thank Helen and Michael for all their hard work on the project, as well as Dallas Campbell, a keen advocate for citizen science, who took on the role of “bumblebee ambassador” for the project. And of course we’d like to thank our colleagues at EDF Energy who were incredibly supportive of the project from the start, and helped to inspire thousands of young people with science.

Rob Cope, director of Remember A Charity and a member of the judging panel at the Business Charity Awards 2015, said: "The initiative helped to inspire the next generation of budding scientists, engaging a truly impressive number of schoolchildren."