Citizen science and citizen energy communities are pluralistic terms that refer to a constellation of methods, projects, and outreach activities; however, citizen science and citizen energy communities are rarely, if ever, explicitly aligned. Our searches for “citizen science” and “energy” produced limited results and “citizen science” and “energy communities” produced zero. Therefore, to outline a future direction of citizen science, its potential alliances with energy communities, and their collaborative contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals, we performed a systematic literature review and analysis of “public participation” and “energy communities” using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-Analyses (PRIMSA) guidelines. The results show four pathways through which current public participation in energy communities might be more explicitly aligned with citizen science projects: benefits and values, energy practices, intermediaries, and energy citizenship. Each of these pathways could engage citizen scientists in qualitative and quantitative research and increase scientific literacy about energy systems. Our call for citizen science to supplement current forms of participation builds from the “ecologies of participation” framework, itself an extension of co-productionist theories of science and technology studies. We conclude with a discussion of affordances and barriers to the alliances between citizen science and energy communities and their potential contributions to SDGs 7: Affordable and Clean Energy, 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities, 13: Climate Action, and 17: Partnerships for the Goals.
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