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RRI – H2020 approach

Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) is the ambitious initiative of the European Commission as a cross-cutting issue in Horizon 2020, the current Framework Programme for Research and Innovation.

RRI is framed by the six key dimensions, which have been defined by the European Commission: ethics, governance, public engagement, science education, gender and open access.

In H2020 Programme the emphasis on RRI is put especially within the Science with and for society Work Programme and related calls for proposals. However the intention is to include the RRI aspects in the R&D agenda setting, evaluation and implementation across all the pillars of H2020. Already, some national agencies, which provide funds for R&D (i.e. in the Netherlands, United Kingdom or France) have included the RRI framework into the application processes.

RRI draws on the body of knowledge and experience provided by the history of:

  • technology assessment, by extending the scope of consideration to ethical issues of responsibility and to broader governance and science, technology and society (STS) issues;
  • corporate social responsibility, which tends to be industry-driven. In contrast to that RRI establishes procedures to better integrate societal needs in the process of research and innovation and its methodology is centered on the equal roles and responsibility of societal actors and innovators.

Based on www.wikipedia.org

rri

Fig. Six dimensions of RRI
Source/Artist: Heyko Stöber

RRI – development vision

What is the long term goal of such direction in the science policy making? According to EC and scientific community representatives, the implementation of RRI into the “DNA” of European innovators, understood as the cultural change rather than an ISO standard, will make it possible for societal actors to work together during the whole research and innovation process in order to better align both the process and its outcomes, with the values, needs and expectations of European society.

Any cultural change takes time and engages many teams on the journey. One of such team is the consortium of Monitoring the evolution and benefits of Responsible Research and Innovation (MoRRI) project. Its main objective is “to provide scientific evidence, data, analysis and policy intelligence to support directly Directorate General for Research and Innovation (DG-RTD) research funding activities and policy-making activities in relation with Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI)”. The 4-year project is led by Technopolis Consulting Group Belgium and involving leading European organisations and individual experts. Among the core partners are the University of Aarhus, the Institute of Advanced Studies (IHS), CWTS from the University of Leiden, as well as the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI, INGENIO from the University of Valencia, the University of Athens, the University College London (UCL), and SPRU from the University of Sussex.

On 21-22 September at Fondation Universitaire in Brussells a “Reinforcing the Alignment of Research and Innovation with Societal Needs” visioning workshop was organized. The event gathered 36 participants representing the above mentioned institutions and 20 other entities, such as: Tecnalia (Spain), TNO (Netherlands), Helsinki University, Turku University (Finland), Joanneum Research (Austria), VDI/VDE-IT (Germany), Slovak Academy of Sciences, Science Europe (Belgium), Knowledge Economy Network (Slovenia), SIFO-National Institute for Consumer Research (Norway), Instytut Technologii Eksploatacji – PIB (Poland).

The workshop aimed to discuss, develop or recommend:

  • the preferred visions of RRI,
  • the implications for different sectors (society, science, industry, policy),
  • the metrics and indicators of RRI for these sectors.

RRI – in ITeE - PIB

RRI is the main theme of the Horizon 2020 funded project: CIMULACT - Citizen And Multi-Actor Consultation On Horizon2020.

CIMULACT has as a main objective to add to the relevance and accountability of European research and innovation – Horizon 2020 as well as national - by engaging citizens and stakeholders in co-creation of research agendas based on real and validated societal visions, needs and demands. The project will expand the outlook and debate on STI issues, increase scientific literacy in a broad sense, which includes the understanding of the societal role of Science, Technology and innovation (STI), and create shared understanding between scientific stakeholders, policy-makers and citizens. This multi-actor approach will embrace EU28 plus Norway and Switzerland. In the project Poland is represented by ITeE – PIB’s Innovation Strategies Department.

CIMULACT will:

  • Create vision and scenarios that connect societal needs with future expected advances in Science and their impact on technology, society, environment etc. in connection to the grand challenges.
  • Provide concrete input to Horizon 2020 through recommendations and policy options for R&I and simulated calls for the Horizon2020 Work Programmes.
  • Engage citizens and stakeholders in a highly participatory debate/consultation/process on scenarios for desirable sustainable futures and research.
  • Build capacities in citizen and multi-actor engagement in R&I through development, experimentation, training and assessment of methods for engagement.

The invitation to participate in a public consulation, which will be organised in the framework of CIMULACT project in Poland in mid December 2015 can be found here.

RRI – more information

RRI Tools project: building a better relationship between science and society

http://www.rri-tools.eu/

Video presenting the idea of CIMULACT project is available here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E2IVKZcMkqM&feature=youtu.be

 

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