IFRIS, partner of the European project Res-AGorA on responsible innovation and research

Some researchers from the French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA-SenS), the Laboratory Technology, Territories and Societies (LATTS) and the Centre Alexandre Koyré (CAK) – members of the Institute For Research and Innovation in Society (IFRIS) and the LabEx SITES – are part of a European project to create a governance framework for Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI), that secures the commitment within research and innovation towards solving major social and environmental challenges that our societies face.

Science, research and innovation are integral elements of modern societies, and society increasingly expects them to address the key challenges of the future – such as health and wellbeing, sustainability, or climate change. At the level of the European Union, the growing need to gear research and innovation towards societal needs is reflected by the EU 2020 strategy or Horizon 2020. While science and technology potentially provide solutions, it is well acknowledged that they are usually accompanied by uncertainties, unanticipated consequences and controversy. Hence, Responsible Research and Innovation – RRI – has been introduced as an approach which aims at improving the alignment between research and innovation on the one hand and societal demands and moral values on the other.

It is this context within which the European Commission is funding the Res-AGorA project (Responsible Research and Innovation in a Distributed Anticipatory Governance Frame. A Constructive Socio-normative Approach) to develop a comprehensive governance framework for RRI. The goal of the Res-AGorA project will be achieved through extensive research about existing RRI governance across different scientific technological areas, continuous monitoring of RRI trends and developments in selected countries, and constructive negotiations and deliberation between key stakeholders. This comprehensive empirical work will be the building blocks of the creation of a governance framework for RRI.

Res-AGorA consists of eight European partners from universities, research institutes and offices for science and technology. The project is coordinated by the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI, one of the leading innovation research institutes in Europe. The project is funded by the EU within FP 7 Science In Society and runs over a three-year period, beginning February 2013.

For more information, see Res-AGorA website.