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RoadMAPs to Societal Mobilisation for the Advancement of Responsible Industrial Technologies

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - SMART-map (RoadMAPs to Societal Mobilisation for the Advancement of Responsible Industrial Technologies)

Reporting period: 2017-05-01 to 2018-10-31

The aim of SMART-map has been to connect a wide range of industrial players with actors from research and civil society organisations and establish innovative formats of collaboration to jointly discuss, define and pilot concrete roadmaps (SMART Maps) for the responsible development of technologies and services in three game-changing fields. The SMART-map addressed the areas of precision medicine, 3D printing in the biomedical field, and synthetic biology.
The project has reached its ambitious goal by developing a new format for so called “Industrial Dialogues”, which allowed the initial co-design of the three SMART Maps through multi-stakeholder participatory processes. On each theme, the project has tested one or more of the tools proposed in the corresponding SMART Map, through industrial pilots involving one or more companies.
The SMART Maps released at the end of the project are the result of an inclusive process, as well as a real-life experience in a company, with the ambition of presenting examples that can be followed by other companies in the field. We delivered practical evidence of the benefits for industry in using the SMART Maps, and highlight opportunities for new business models embedding social responsibility.
The project has successfully achieved all goals envisaged for both periods of activities:
1. we have developed an innovative workshop format for the Industrial Dialogues;
2. we have engaged a high level Advisory Board, which has reviewed and improved the format of the workshops, the structure and content of the SMART Maps as well as the structure and goals of the industrial pilots;
3. we have mapped more than 700 stakeholders across 6 countries and collected over 100 in-depth surveys, as well as performed formative and summative evaluation in each sector;
4. we have run 6 Industrial Dialogues during the period, and additional 3 trans-disciplinary and cross fertilisation dialogues;
5. we have analysed and built upon the results of the workshops and the industrial pilots, and released three SMART Maps, i.e. fulfilling the main objective of the project;
6. we have extensively communicated the ongoing process through several multimedia channels;
7. we have engaged a wide range of organisations, ensuring the impact of the project well beyond the RRI community, reaching industry and standards organisations, consultancy firms, patients associations;
8. we have released all documents and training materials, ensuring legacy of the project and further multiplying the impact of this action.
The format of the Industrial Dialogues proved to be original and effective, strongly oriented towards the co-design of concrete outcomes. This format is an important achievement that SMART-map makes available for any institution interested in organising co-design events.
The workshops have all highlighted that RRI is an eco-system, more complex than originally anticipated: the outcomes of the Dialogues triggered an important learning process, which is reflected in the final content of the SMART Maps.
A characteristic “matrix of success” grid has been used, to identify the goals of each pilot and the results that would be acceptable for each company. This grid has been used to track the progress of the experience and identify the impact of implementing RRI in each of the different contexts, and finally to identify the key benefits for the stakeholders involved.
The learning elements from the pilot experiences have been used to revise the SMART Maps, and to highlight what makes the pilots “examples to be followed”, to describe the benefits of adopting RRI, and to suggest actions each actor of the ecosystem can contribute to, in order to mainstream RRI.
A wide array of outreach and dialogue activities has been carried out, ensuring multiplying effects, strengthening the impact of the project, and paving the way for the legacy of SMART-map as well as the adoption of its results by institutions all over the world. This has been supported by a very dynamic and multimedia oriented coverage of all the activities.
A final conference in Brussels has been organised, with the key goal of going beyond the presentation of the project results: the meeting has strengthened the connections with a diverse range of subjects, who presented their experiences and demonstrated how relevant the SMART Maps are for their work.
The Industrial Dialogues have worked like an impressive number of think-tanks, pushing the boundaries of our initial targets. It emerged that if RRI is to be considered as a framework where different actors work together, the strong focus on industry needs to be put into a different perspective: tools to be implemented in companies need to be embedded in an RRI ecosystem in order to be effective. The implementation of RRI requires the involvement of different players across the whole innovation chain, and therefore framework conditions providing incentives, recognition, and awareness.
Nevertheless, while exploring cross-disciplinary challenges, we highlighted that:
- RRI and other approaches (like CSR, B-corp, LCA etc) show more overlaps than anticipated;
- The distinctive recognition (and institutionalisation) of RRI plays an important role, facilitating the work to mainstream this approach;
- The involvement of citizens in for-profit innovation processes is a reality, which pushes for rewards and recognition, and therefore contributes to creating favourable framework conditions for the implementation of RRI.
Approaching our stakeholders as an eco-system has highlighted the need to create innovation communities practicing RRI as well as the advantages for all actors involved in the process.
The drafting of the SMART Maps happened at a very crucial moment when several initiatives are taking shape to coordinate research and innovation in different game-changing fields. The results of the project contributed to several strategic initiatives and analyses (carried out at national sectorial level as well as by the European Parliament and other international consortia), by providing examples of innovative approaches to embed RRI into a wider scenario.
As the key outcome of the project, the SMART Maps:
- Deliver practical evidence of the benefits for the companies who choose to implement RRI;
- Describe a wide range of benefits for all stakeholders involved;
- Suggest concrete actions to be taken in order to mainstream RRI in each industrial sector;
- Present opportunities for new business models embedding social responsibility.
Additionally, we have shown that our SMART Maps intercept key trends in the successful management of industrial innovation. While intercepting those trends, and therefore having a high chance to be understood and appreciated by industry, they also provide a unique, more comprehensive, inclusive, value- and society-aware approach to addressing key needs of innovative companies. SMART-map results speak a language immediately understandable by industry, and offer an additional chance for competitiveness which contributes to mainstreaming RRI.
A wide range of organisations spanning from consultancy firms, to industrial association, standardisation bodies and patient’s association has already expressed the intention to follow up on the SMART Maps, adopting some of their tools or implementing some of the actions.
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