MAinstreaming Responsible Innovation in European S3
The European Commission (Science in Dialogue Towards a European Model for Responsible Research and Innovation, 2012) states: “we can only find the right answers to the challenges we face by involving as many stakeholders as possible in the research and innovation process. Research and innovation must respond to the needs and ambitions of society, reflect its values, and be responsible.” The statement is clear, but the road from intent to implementation is long. EU regions are starting to address Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI), but they face common challenges of perceived complexity of the concept and means of application, lack of appropriate approaches for public authorities and lack of awareness over its huge potential impacts. In MARIE, partners from 8 regions face these challenges together in the context of their smart specialisation priority sectors. Their objective is to improve regional public policy that supports delivery of RRI to enterprises’ product, process and service design, production and distribution. Changes are expected in projects funded by policy instruments and in policy management structures and strategic focus, including integration of RRI criteria and RRI as a horizontal concept. MARIE achieves this through exchanging experiences on 3 types of support action contained in the RRI framework: Quadruple Helix; Open Innovation; Information & Tools for RRI application. Using interregional activities, communication and stakeholder engagement, partners develop Action Plans that result in: improved policy instruments; more and better targeted funding for RRI delivery; increased capacity among innovation actors; consolidated partnerships of quadruple helix innovation chain stakeholders. All innovation chain players benefit. MARIE works towards a medium-term impact of increased awareness and capacity on RRI delivery and a long-term impact of increased responsibility in innovation, with correlated benefits in growth and competitiveness.