The Responsible-Industry project aims at exploring how the adoption of the RRI (Responsible Research and Innovation) principles can help private corporations to conduct their research and innovation (R&I) activities responsively. Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) is, in fact, an inclusive approach to ensure that societal actors work together during the whole research and innovation (R&I) process, to better align both the process and outcomes of R&I with the values, needs and expectations of European society.
RRI builds on a strong commitment of European Commission policies to stimulate greater responsiveness of science and innovation towards society’s needs. Until now, RRI has been primary focused on publicly funded research. For maximum uptake of RRI, it is important to advance the adoption of RRI in both the private and public sectors. For this reason, the European Commission envisages wider application of RRI to industry. This objective could be facilitated by enlarging CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) policies to take into account peculiar aspects of research and innovation processes. The CSR and RRI concepts share the objective of integrating social, environmental, ethical, human rights and consumer concerns into the enterprise business operations and to max-imize the creation of shared value for shareholders and stakeholders and society at large.
Social and environmental impacts are increasingly complex and companies need new ways to address this challenge. There is also a growing need for companies to demonstrate that they are ethically, socially and environmentally responsible. There are in fact several recent examples of new emerging technologies, which have been contested by the society because societal impacts and ethical aspects were not adequately taken into consideration in the development of new products and processes. Considerable investments made to develop these innovations were wasted. In this context, the Responsible Industry Project specifically aims to integrate principles and methodologies of RRI into the research and innovation processes developed by industries active in the domain of ICT for an ageing society.
The ICT - related tools and services for an ageing population constitute a maturing technology and market with huge growth potential, combining several aspects relevant for RRI. In particular:
• The research field is rapidly moving and challenging, because ICT are enablers of innovative and sometimes futuristic solutions
• The market area is targeted to vulnerable groups of the population, thus significant ethical and social issues must be addressed during product development
• The target group is heterogeneous and having cultural differences
• The market is still in its infancy, and novel specific R&I and business models are under development, thus providing opportunities for RRI approaches to be tested.
To this purpose, a “Framework for the Implementation of RRI” has been set up by the Responsible Industry Project to provide strategic options and recommendations for industrial actors engaged in research and innovation to pursue responsible practices and behaviours in developing devices, products and services in the above said field.
Adopting RRI will generate numerous benefits for companies. These include:
• Strengthening links with customers and end-users
• Enhancing the company’s reputation
• Decreasing business risks and unintended consequences
• Strengthening public trust in the safety of products
• Increasing acceptability of products
• Adopting an environmentally friendly profile
As a result, the company reputation will be enhanced with positive impact on its medium-term competitiveness/profitability, so improving the bottom line and the company value. In order to achieve these goals, responsi-bility should become an integral part of the company culture and mission, a real change of thinking should be pursued.
|Translated title of the contribution||Responsible research in industry RRI|
|Title of host publication||Ikääntyminen ja teknologia|
|Publisher||VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland|
|Publication status||Published - 2017|
|MoE publication type||Not Eligible|
|Series||VTT Research Highlights|
- responsible research