September 24, 2014, by Warren Pearce

Responsible Research and Innovation InfoHub

IMG_20140925_143352In parallel with the launch of the new report Responsible Research and Innovation: Responding to a New Research Agenda, this page acts as a focus and reference point for RRI activities across the University of Nottingham. The effective implementation of RRI into research programmes requires scientists and social science practitioners in RRI to be able to work together from the start of new projects. The InfoHub will provide a means for researchers to network and exchange ideas, information on upcoming RRI events, and link to good practice of RRI at the University and elsewhere.

If you have suggestions for links, would like to join the Nottingham RRI network, or would like a lovely hard copy of our report, please get in touch with Sarah Hartley or Warren Pearce, or via the comment box below.

What is Responsible Research and Innovation?

Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) is concerned with the nature and trajectory of research and innovation: what it can do for society and who gets to decide. It has emerged in recent years as a potential bridge between science and society that aims to increase the public value of science. RRI has been embedded in key funding institutions such as EPSRC (Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council), and the EU’s Horizon 2020 programme and in major funding calls from other organisations.

RRI Nottingham Network

The Making Science Public Programme is coordinating a network at the University for researchers and professionals interested in RRI. Chaired by Dr Sujatha Raman, the network aims to bring together different viewpoints on RRI across the University and respond to upcoming funding calls. If you are interested in getting involved, please contact Sujatha

The University is also a partner in Arizona State University’s Virtual Institute of Responsible Innovation (VIRI). VIRI was created to accelerate the formation of a community of international scholars and practitioners who will create a common concept of responsible innovation for research, training and outreach.  Nottingham is represented in VIRI by Sujatha, who is currently Visiting Scholar at Arizona State.

RRI at Nottingham: Responding to a New Research Agenda

In the summer of 2014, a Bridging the Gaps project (co-investigators: Warren Pearce, Sarah Hartley and Alasdair Taylor) investigated how RRI was being interpreted and implemented at the University of Nottingham. It was found that RRI has already been incorporated in major programmes funded at the University, including the Synthetic Biology Research Centre and the Centre for Doctoral Training in Sustainable Chemistry. Furthermore, a growing number of academics and professionals are aware of and interested in RRI but that currently the University addressed it in an ad hoc manner. The findings and recommendations of the project are summarised in the report, Responsible Research and Innovation: Responding to a New Research Agenda.

A series of upcoming blog posts will disseminate the project findings further and will be published here, including:

  • Can we use the RRI framework and Horizon 2020 “keys” to map expertise across a University?
  • Is deep-sea mineral mining being done responsibly?
  • What does responsible research mean for the social sciences?

This page will be periodically updated with links to new RRI commentary and relevant academic papers.


Institute for Science and Society Seminars:

RRI: challenges and opportunities for governance Sarah Hartley & Warren Pearce (UoN), 6/11/14, 1pm, A100, Law & Social Sciences (West Wing)

RRI and institutions in the innovation system Ellen-Marie Forsberg (Oslo and Akershus University College), 7/11/14, A01, Highfield House. In conjunction with the Centre for Applied Bioethics.

Public Lecture:

Prof. Richard Owen, Chair of Responsible Innovation, Exeter. 8/1/15 (details to follow)

Links and References

Further reading:

Stilgoe, J., Owen, R., & Macnaghten, P. (2013). Developing a framework for responsible innovation. Research Policy, 42(9), 1568-1580.

Von Schomberg, R. (2011). Towards responsible research and innovation in the information and communication technologies and security technologies fields. DG Research and Innovation of the European Commission.

Owen, R., & Goldberg, N. (2010). Responsible innovation: a pilot study with the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council. Risk Analysis, 30(11), 1699-1707.

de Saille, S. (2013). Innovating Innovation: RRI as a Guiding Principle in the ERA. Available at SSRN.

Stahl, B. C. (2011). IT for a better future: how to integrate ethics, politics and innovation. Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, 9(3), 140-156.

Sutcliffe, H., & Director, M. A. T. T. E. R. (2011). A report on responsible research & innovation. DG Research and Innovation of the European Commission.

Robinson, D. K. (2009). Co-evolutionary scenarios: An application to prospecting futures of the responsible development of nanotechnology. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 76(9), 1222-1239.


Posted in anticipatory governanceinnovationpublic engagement with scienceresponsible innovationresponsive researchScience Policy