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Newsletter 52, April 2016




Higher Education, Science Shops and Responsible Research and Innovation

The concept of responsible research and innovation (RRI) has experienced considerable growth. It opens up new perspectives for scientific policy, research and education based on the principle of excellence, not only because it provides access to unexploited knowledge through involving civil society in science, research and innovation, but also because it improves the capacity for dialogue between science and society. To create spaces of interaction, engagement and dialogue in different academic and social contexts in which to become active it needs conditions with regard to work and qualification that enable (future) scientists to combine their research and teaching activity with their social commitment as scientists. Excellence in teaching and research has to be consolidated by means of interdisciplinary, transdisciplinary and participative approaches in the area of responsible research and innovation.

Here European projects funded under H2020 are having their first highlights this year. One of them, the EnRRICH project, will be the background for the 7th Living Knowledge conference to be held 3 months from now in Dublin. EnRRICH will build the capacity of staff in higher education to facilitate their students’ competencies in responsible research and innovation (RRI) to respond to the research needs of society, particularly underserved civil society organisations (CSOs). The other one, HEIRRI, recently held its first international conference in Barcelona and presented a first approach to practices and a multidisciplinary approach for RRI. Both projects are closely related and cooperate to create new ways to teach and learn how RRI can be adapted in higher education teaching environments.

Also Sparks partners have been very active during the last months. They have been setting up the scene for what can be seen and experienced at the exhibition and during the participatory activities around medicine and technology, public health regulations and ways in which citizens can learn about responsibility and how to get involved in scientific research. The exhibitions will start touring in Europe this summer.

Anyway, all this cannot be seen isolated from other ground breaking activities: The RRI Toolkit was launched to support closer interactions of the actors of research and innovation systems. It offers more than 350 resources – including inspiring practices, guidelines and background elements - that will help to design and bring projects to life.  Just in time for the new calls not just only in the Science with and for Society section of Horizon 2020.

So if your next months’ agenda still has open slots, check for the RRI Tools trainings in your country, visit the Sparks exhibition and please, attend the Living Knowledge conference in June in Dublin to share your findings and learn what others have explored.  Early bird registration for Dublin ends 31 March.

Norbert Steinhaus



7th Living Knowledge Conference - Registration now open

The conference, as part of the EnRRICH project, will be hosted by Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland, from 22-24 June (there will also be pre-conference activities on the afternoon of 21 June, and a public event on the evening of 23 June). As with all Living Knowledge Conferences, positive interactions will provide excellent opportunities for networking. There will be a focus on community-based research, responsible research and innovation, and other knowledge exchange and creation collaborations between local communities, civil society organisations, researchers and educators.

The conference is being funded by the EU as part of the EnRRICH project. EnRRICH aims to build policy, practice and partnerships to support the solving of real-world problems collaboratively, and to build responsible research and innovation (RRI) into the curriculum. This will build the capacity of students across Europe to engage in collaborative, ethical open research with communities. As a result the main focus of this conference will be how to build RRI into learning and teaching structures in Higher Education.

Please register at

The deadlines for the conference are as follows:
31 March 2016: deadline for early bird registration
20-21 June 2016: Science Shop Summer School
21 June 2016: pre-conference workshops/site visits
22-24 June 2016: conference

Conference Programme & Plenary Speakers:

The conference committee received a great number of proposal. They are happy to finally accept over 120 presentations from over 260 authors for the conference. Confirmed guest plenary speakers at this time are:

  • Sophie Duncan, Deputy Director, National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement, UK
  • Simon Cane, Director of Public and Cultural Engagement, University College London, UK
  • Sile Lane, Director of Campaigns, Sense about Science, UK
  • Réka Matolay, Assistant Professor, Department of Decision Sciences, Corvinus University Budapest

For more information about the conference and the programme see or contact the organisers on

Successful implementation of CBPR module at UCC

Piloting RRI educational materials is an integral part of the EnRRICH project. In 2015, the EnRRICH partner University College Cork (UCC) (Kenneth Burns, Catherine O’Mahony, Ruth Hally) designed a new module for PhD students. The module aimed to facilitate engagement between UCC students and staff, and a community group to establish topics and projects of importance to the community. The module, which had 8 PhD students from a range of disciplines, such as pharmacy, psychology and oral history, was the first of its kind in UCC.

UCC approached Westgate Foundation (WG), a community housing facility which also offers a range of services to older adults in County Cork. Four visits were made to Westgate Foundation where ideas and topics of importance were discussed and developed. In the last visit, a representative from UCC CARL (Community Academic Research Links, UCC’s public engagement office) spoke to the participants about the future direction of the proposed research ideas. The partnership provided a valuable opportunity for a community group to have their voice heard and for students to be exposed to live research projects stemming from the community. As the project gathered momentum, WG participants began to view themselves as valuable actors in collectively identifying, understanding and addressing concepts of importance to the community. The feedback from students has been positive with students reporting that the module has encouraged them to view their research in a different light. The module has also raised the profile of UCC CARL, specifically CARL’s critical role in strengthening the University’s public engagement activities. The UCC EnRRICH team are evaluating the module and assessing opportunities to run this module in the future.

Please address your queries to Ruth Hally

Supporting Science Shops in Teaching and Learning Strategies and Policies

As part of the EnRRICH project we have committed to kick starting a global debate on how Science Shops can deliver responsible research and innovation training through academic curricula.  One part of this work is gathering models of good practices whilst the other part involves gathering examples of policy where academics are encouraged to support, or rewarded for supporting, curriculum based Science Shop type practices.

Do you have a good example in your university, region or country of how academics can be rewarded for supporting Science Shop type projects?  It could be a teaching prize in your university, an educational policy that asks academic departments to give students experience of live research, a funding stream in your region or government policy that states that it's important to expose students to the needs of CSOs.  Do you have any thoughts on how Science Shops might fit within European educational policies and agendas?  We would really welcome your input on this ahead of the Living Knowledge conference in Dublin, where we will be bringing together policymakers to discuss this issue.  Our goal is to open up a global discussion in order to start to embed Science Shops in teaching and learning policy as well as in research policy.

Fur further information please contact Emma McKenna

EnRRICH and HEIRRI project meet at conference in Barcelona

About 7 EnRRICH partners attended the first conference of the sister project HEIRRI (Higher education institutions and Responsible Research & Innovation) on the 18th of March in Barcelona. The project is funded under the same Horizon2020-SWAFS topic of Responsible Research and Innovation in Higher Education Curricula. Focusing on Teaching Responsible Research and Innovation at University this HEIRRI conference brought together around 150 professionals from European organisations working in Research & Innovation, including higher education institutions, research centres, institutions of formal and informal learning, public institutions, industry, and civil society organisations. Vrije Universiteit Brussels (VUB) & Queen's University Belfast (QUB) hosted an EnRRICH introduction session (picture bottom) in which we also gathered input on policy and promising practices and Wageningen University (WU) presented a poster on the teaching & learning work they are doing in the frame of WP2 (picture top). Furthermore, the project partners agreed on an exchange of work and deliverables with the HEIRRI consortium and a joint consortium meeting and/or dissemination event will be organized. Relations with other RRI projects (RRI Tools, FOSTER, FoTRRIS…) were also strengthened. So the first steps of an interesting and continuous interaction on RRI in higher education are set. All partners are looking forward to the reunion with all stakeholders at the Living Knowledge Conference in June excitedly!

More information on the HEIRRI project, coordinated by Universitat Pompeu Fabra of Barcelona, at

EnRRICH partners talking RRI

Partner have been active in spreading the idea of RRI and Science Shops among a broad range of stakeholders including academic staff and students. Several seminars in different countries were organised.

Prof. Andrea Vargiu, University of Sassari, organised two seminars open to colleagues, practitioners and students to discuss potential and possible work to promote RRI for social professions' education and training. Each seminar was attended by approx. 20 interested people and gave very good insights into public engagement and possible RRI embedding in the curriculum. The seminars also hosted colleagues from abroad such as from the University of Bari and Catania, Italy and the Chuo University, Tokio.

The Unit of Public Engagement on Health Research at IrsiCaixa, Spain organized a seminar on Science Shops to foster the creation of Science Shops in Catalonia and Spain. The event was led by Dr. Emma McKenna, deputy coordinator of ENRRICH and Science Shop coordinator at the Queens University of Belfast. Policymakers, educators, researchers and science communicators attended in order to explore the possibility to set up new Science Shops in their communities. The presentation included inspiring best practices related to health.

Moreover, Rosina Malagrida, Head of the Unit of Public Engagement at IrsiCaixa, presented different suggestions on how RRI can be embedded in STEM education at the HEIRRI conference. This general framework was illustrated with the examples of Xplore Health and the Healthy Mind project, a case study of participatory reserach, which are promoted jointly by IrsiCaixa and Obra Social "la Caixa" and counts with the collaboration of the European project EnRRICH. Healthy Mind is conducted in collaboration with educators, students, researchers, patient associations, politicians and businesses, and aims to design and implement health interventions for and with students, involving them in research and innovation projects on mental health. The methodologies follow the RRI quality criteria and are inspired both in the model of Science Shops and on methodologies such as community-based participatory research (CBPR), open innovation and participatory governance.

RRI Tools

The RRI Toolkit is live!

Since March 8, the Responsible Research and Innovation Toolkit is online - a wealth of resources to foster not only “the best science in the world, but the best science for the world”. The RRI Toolkit aims to encourage the uptake of research and innovation processes better answering the needs and expectations of society. It is designed for individuals as well as institutions involved in research, policy-making, business and industry, education, or civil society organizations. It also addresses topics such as open access, gender in science, ethics, science education, governance, public engagement. As of today, the RRI Toolkit contains 356 resources that will help to design and bring projects to life, and to train on Responsible Research and Innovation. These resources include:

  • inspiring practices;
  • manuals, guidelines, how-tos, catalogues and online databases of resources;
  • background documents including presentations, reports, cross-analysis and pan-European surveys;
  • other European projects that developed RRI resources; and
  • a self-reflection tool on RRI for users to assess their professional practice.

As a complement to these resources, videos and presentations introduce the concept, scope and main aspects of Responsible Research and Innovation to newcomers.

Have a look at the toolkit under Feedback is much welcome.


UNESCO Chair Report 2012-2016

Based at the University of Victoria (UVic) and the Society for Participatory Research in Asia (PRIA), the  UNESCO Chair in Community Based Research and Social Responsibility in Higher Education is co-directed by Dr. Budd L Hall and Dr. Rajesh Tandon. The UNESCO Chair supports North-South-South and South-South partnerships that build on and enhance the emerging consensus in knowledge democracy. It strengthens recent collaboration between the Higher Education section in UNESCO, the Global University Network for Innovation (GUNI), Global Alliance on Community University Engagement and other regional and global networks. Hall and Tandon recently published a report about the last four very productive years (2012-2016) of UNESCO Chair activities in knowledge production and mobilization, policy advocacy and training in CBR.

Download the report here.

Sparks' Inception report - RRI and technology shifts in health and medicine

One of the first inspiring documents produced by the Sparks project is its Inception report. The purpose of the report is to guide the reader on how to identify developments in healthcare related fields that are suitable topics for public discussion about the future direction of research and innovation.

It gives a refreshing insight about new questions, reflections, practices and scenarios that technological developments are bringing to the table, and how citizens are using these gadgets to improve, create and recreate the health and medical environment. The reader will get a better comprehension about real cases where innovation is happening in a collaborative manner at the intersection of technology, health and medicine and how the RRI approach is a new way of looking at the research and innovation landscape. The report explains in a reader-friendly manner the key aspects of current European research mindset and the fast technological developments happening nowadays.

You can download the report at

Practice Briefs on social innovation (TRANSIT Briefs)

TRANSIT (TRANsformative Social Innovation Theory) is an ambitious research project that will develop a theory of transformative social innovation which is about empowerment and change in society. It is co-funded by the European Commission and runs for four years, from January 2014 until December 2017. The project works on the research question: How does social innovation interact with other forms of (transformative) change, and how are actors (dis) empowered therein? The partners have published two Practice Briefs that focus on social innovation practices and related topics so far. The Briefs are generated based on case studies of social innovation networks in EU and Latin America. The first brief describes the transformative aims of 12 social innovation networks, including their models of change and the interactions with their context. The second TRANSIT brief addresses the governance and politics of transformative social innovation. In this brief you can read about the co-production of transformative social innovation in terms of how it generates solutions, but also the problems, setbacks, constraints and negative side-effects involved with this coproduction.

To read and download the briefs visit


Public Engagement in Energy Research

Jellema, J.; Mulder, H.A.J. Public Engagement in Energy Research. Energies 2016, 9, 125.

Public Engagement in Research is a key element in “Responsible Research and Innovation”; a cross-cutting issue in current European research funding. Public engagement can advance energy R&D, by delivering results that are more in-line with society’s views and demands; and collaboration also unlocks societal skills and knowledge. This paper structures the ways to look at engagement, and gives some pointers on how to implement it in energy R&D, with various levels of intensity. The publics to engage with can be citizens, future users, affected persons, but also organisations that represent them.

Download the article at


Developing Community University Partnerships Course 2016

The Community University Partnership Programme at the University of Brighton (Cupp) offers a five day intensive course for those wanting to develop their skills in university community engagement with a six-month follow-up programme from April – September 2016. The Cupp programme is concerned with mutual working between universities and communities, identifying ways in which study and research might link to current issues of local, national and global concern. This course is aimed at university managers, academics, lecturers, administrators or brokers who are interested in the development of community-university partnerships. It will provide a historical and policy background and locate community-university engagement in a broader political context. It will also suggest a range of different models and examples of how this works in practice in different parts of the world. Through carefully matched individual support it enables participants to develop a programme or model for engagement in their own institution and to evaluate this with a group of peers online. The course in Brighton will take place 11–15 April 2016 followed by online seminars on 4 May, 1 June, 6 July, 3 August, 7 September. If you want to register for the course please contact or Dr Juliet Millican The deadline for applications has passed, but there is still a possibility to take part.

More information about the course and arrangements can be found here.

Conference Documentation – RRI Shaping new Horizons

On 14 – 15 January 2016, the conference “RRI Shaping new Horizons: Responsible Research and Innovation in Europe and across the World” was held in Brussels. Organised by the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) and the projects GREAT, ResAgora, Responsibility and Progress (Go4 projects) the conference aimed to highlight work undertaken by the institutions and to stimulate debate between representatives of the main stakeholder groups involved in research and innovation. The interplay between RRI and Commissioner Carlos Moedas’ key priorities of “Open Innovation, Open Science and Openness to the World”, was addressed. The Go4 projects were ready to present their findings, conceptual developments, concrete messages and policy recommendations to contribute to the development of evidence-based research policy in Europe and its member states. By highlighting current practice and factors that influence the success of RRI, the conference has provided insights into good practice that can be the basis of future policy.

Conference documentation including videos, presentations, opinions and photos can be found at

EUA Roadmap on Open Access to Research Publications

The European University Association (EUA) published its “Roadmap on Open Access to Research Publications” after an endorsement from the EUA Council at its meeting on 29 January 2016. The main objective of the roadmap is to assist universities in the transition to Open Access (OA). More broadly, it is the first step in a series of EUA initiatives aimed at addressing the implications of Open Science. The roadmap focuses primarily on fostering structured dialogue among stakeholders; promoting and supporting the adoption of OA policies, infrastructures and initiatives by European universities; encouraging the development and establishment of advanced scientific recognition and research assessment systems; addressing intellectual property rights and copyright policies for various outputs; considering alternative and sustainable OA business models; promoting access, use and sharing of research publications and data, including text and data mining (TDM); and encouraging, supporting and eventually monitoring the establishment of comprehensive standards for institutional OA policies concerning research publications and teaching materials.

More information can be found at

Sciencewise ‘dialogue in policy’ training - recordings and slides

Sciencewise is running 1-hour, bitesize training sessions on the fundamentals of public dialogue aimed primarily at policy makers. The sessions provide an overview of what public dialogue is, what it means in practice, and the impact it can deliver.

Recordings and slides of the training sessions of last and this year can be accessed at


7th Living Knowledge Conference 2016

Inspire – Integrating community based partnership into learning and teaching for responsible research and innovation (RRI)
June 22-24, 2016 in Dublin, Ireland
As with all Living Knowledge Conferences, there will be lots of positive interaction, providing excellent opportunities for networking. This conference will also consider how to build collaborative research into learning and teaching structures in Higher Education. There will be a focus on Science Shops, community-based research, and other knowledge exchange and creation collaborations between local communities, civil society organisations, researchers and educators. Conference registration is now open.

2nd annual Community Engaged Learning Symposium

May 3-5, 2016 in Grahamstown, South Africa
The Rhodes University Community Engagement Division will be hosting the 2nd annual Community Engaged Learning Symposium at the Gavin Relly Postgraduate Village from the 3-5 of May 2016. The purpose of the community engaged learning symposium is to bring together students and academics from across international higher education institutions and community based organisations to promote the scholarship of engagement, service learning, engaged student leadership, as well as building national relationships and partnerships around engagement.

14th CCPH Conference

Journey to Justice: Creating Change Through Partnerships
May 11-14, 2016 in New Orleans, USA
At a time when social and racial justice are at the forefront of conversations about health equity, CCPH seeks to promote, support and encourage partnerships designed to improve health by addressing social and racial justice issues. The 14th International Conference will bring together community partners, faculty members, students, funders and policy makers from around the world to learn from each other and highlight partnerships and research collaborations addressing health equity through social justice.

First ECSA Conference 2016

Citizen Science – Innovation in Open Science, Society and Policy
May 19–21, 2016 in Berlin, Germany
The ECSA Citizen Science Conference 2016 aims at policy makers, science funders, scientists, practitioners in the field of citizen science, Non-Governmental Organisations and interested citizens. The trans-disciplinary conference will highlight, demonstrate and debate the innovation potential of citizen science for science, society and policy and its role within open science and innovation. It will provide an arena to showcase how both new and traditional ways of citizens working with scientist can enable transformative potential to enhance science-policy and social impact, scientific advancement, scientific literacy and empowerment.

Ecsite Annual Conference 2016

Colours of cooperation
June 9-11, 2016 in Graz, Austria
The annual conference of the European network of science centres and museums – Ecsite – is open to everyone interested in public engagement with science. The conference theme 2016 “Colours of cooperation” not only resonates with Ecsite’s network activities: collaborations, co-creations and partnerships are at heart of your daily professional activities as well.

Conference for Student Research - nationwide and cross-curricular

June 8 9, 2016 at the University of Oldenburg, Germany
For the first time there will be a nationwide and interdisciplinary conference for student research in Germany. Students of all subjects are going to present their research results to an interested audience.
Conference website in German language

Conference on research close teaching and learning

June 9-10, 2016 at the University of Oldenburg, Germany
Subsequently to the "Conference for Student Research - nationwide and cross-curricular", the "Conference on research-based teaching and learning" takes place. The international keynote lectures are supplemented by opinions from students.
Conference website in German language

5th Annual Canadian Knowledge Mobilization Forum

June 27-29, 2016 in Toronto, Canada
Special extended program on “Systems and Sustainability” and also a 10-year celebration of ResearchImpact. The event will be held at the Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning in Toronto. 

ESOF – EuroScience Open Forum

July 23-27, 2016 in Manchester, UK
ESOF is the biennial pan-European meeting dedicated to scientific research and innovation. At ESOF meetings leading scientists, researchers, young researchers, business people, entrepreneurs and innovators, policy makers, science and technology communicators and the general public from all over Europe discuss new discoveries and debate the direction that research is taking in the sciences, humanities and social sciences. ESOF 2016 will be an opportunity to discuss the socio-cultural and economic implications and impacts of scientific revolutions from regional, national, European and global perspectives.

SIS2016 - 1st Conference on Social Impact of Science

July 25-29, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain
Analysing, communicating and improving social impact from research is one of the most pressing demands to all scientific fields. The main objective of this conference is to take a relevant step forward in the analysis of research that are having most social impact (in the different scientific domains), the increase of small scale social impact to further contexts, the planning of social impact for future research proposals, and the improvement of the communication of social impact both to evaluation agencies and to society. The conference is about social impact, and participants have the right to dedicate all their time and resources to learn with colleagues how to improve it.

4s/EASST Conference BCN-2016

Science & technology by other means - Exploring collectives, spaces and futures
31 August- 3 September in Barcelona, Spain
The conference will collectively explore the ways in which science and technology are increasingly performed ‘by other means’, in a variety of exploratory activities that include the articulation of collectives that do not fit with the traditional actors in science and technology, or in ways that problematize the established value systems involved in the production of knowledge and technologies.