International Handbook on Responsible Innovation
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International Handbook on Responsible Innovation

A Global Resource

Edited by René von Schomberg and Jonathan Hankins

The Handbook constitutes a global resource for the fast growing interdisciplinary research and policy communities addressing the challenge of driving innovation towards socially desirable outcomes. This book brings together well-known authors from the US, Europe and Asia who develop conceptual and regional perspectives on responsible innovation as well as exploring the prospects for further implementation of responsible innovation in emerging technological practices ranging from agriculture and medicine, to nanotechnology and robotics. The emphasis is on the socio-economic and normative dimensions of innovation including issues of social risk and sustainability.
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Chapter 10: Responsible research and innovation in the broader innovation system: reflections on responsibility in standardisation, assessment and patenting practices

Ellen-Marie Forsberg


This chapter takes as a point of departure that responsibility in research and innovation concerns actors beyond the researchers and innovators themselves and their institutions. More specifically, I reflect upon the application of RRI in three different parts of the research and innovation systems: standardisation in nanotechnology, assessment of emerging science and technologies in general and patenting in biotechnology. Operationalising RRI in terms of four dimensions, I first summarise findings on the RRI status in these three practices, then I take an integrated look at what these findings imply for the application of the four RRI dimensions to the broader research and innovation system. The analysis highlights issues related to the political nature of agenda-setting for research and innovation, challenges of capacity-building for broad stakeholder involvement, the elusive nature of reflexivity and the problem of documenting genuine societal responsiveness.

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