Mapping for Change


Addressing odour in Southall and Hayes

D-Noses is an EU funded Horizon 2020 project aimed at developing and testing new ways of tackling odour pollution. The traditional ways of measuring odour are expensive and time consuming and perhaps most importantly do not measure the impact that odour emissions have on those living nearby. This project will use citizen science to monitor odours, following an 8-step engagement process with communities, industries and regulators.  The citizen science approach will be piloted in 10 locations across Europe and beyond using free data collection tools.

Our Role

One of the roles of Mapping for Change is to identify and co-create a UK pilot to test the citizen science approach. MfC selected Southall and Hayes, west London. This is an area of rapid development where residential and industrial overlap and where residents have been complaining of bad odours for years. Odours are thought to be being emitted from the two asphalt plants and also from the redevelopment of a former gasworks site which required soil remediation.

After years of odour issues, local tensions were high and trust had broken down between the various parties. This pilot offered the opportunity to open up the discussions and begin to collect evidence to build a clearer picture. We introduced a free app – OdourCollect, developed within the project, to allow citizens to record their odour observations. Working with a campaign group (CASH) and residents of Southall and Hayes along with Ealing Council, Berkeley Group, Tarmac Ltd and FM Conway, MfC co-designed a citizen science project to understand the problem, frame the issue, collect, analyse and visualise the data (odour reports) and discuss potential future action with all stakeholders in a transparent and equitable manner.

For more information you can read the Tackling Odour Issues Case Study.

Related Projects

CIVACT - Promoting civic engagement among youth through district development

CIVACT is a EU-funded, two-year project which aims to address the lack of civic engagement among hard-to-reach youths in urban areas. The goal is to understand how can we empower young people to become the driving force for change through observing and analysing their neighbourhood’s resources and challenges.

Science in the City

Science in the City is a project that is being carried out with residents in the Barbican and Mansell Street, in the City of London. Residents are using low-tech tools to measure Nitrogen Dioxide and particulates.

Urbex - Engaging Young People Through Urban Exploration

This is a project which used urban exploration as an innovative way to engage young people at risk of social exclusion and encourage their participation in civic issues. Each partner organisation worked in a specific pilot neighbourhood to test and deliver different approaches and applications of urban exploration.