Economic, Technological, and Socio-epistemological Drivers Behind RRI
- 266 Downloads
To help explain Responsible Research and Innovation’s recent rise to prominence, I relate four of its defining features – anticipation, stakeholder inclusion, reflexivity, responsiveness – to relevant recent economic, technological and socio-epistemological developments. The economic crisis affected the way anticipation is practiced. The need to justify increased public expenditure brought with it a shift from anticipation as harm-avoidance to anticipation as the attempt to realize the common good. Stakeholder inclusion has received an impetus from the new social media that lend a voice and a face to distant stakeholders, and help foster a sense of mutual interdependence. The growing awareness that many forms of research and innovation fail to deliver on their societal promises has helped to broaden Merton’s ‘organized scepticism’ to include the input of other disciplines and non-experts. Finally, the progressive entanglement of intimate technologies and the lifeworld, has led to new demands that research and innovation extends its responsiveness to impacts on the good life and on the good society. However, all these developments come with pertinent questions and problems that make the success of RRI far from certain.
I want to thank Lotte Asveld for her very helpful comments on an earlier draft.
- Borgmann, Alfred. 1984. Technology and the character of contemporary life: A philosophical inquiry. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
- Hirschman, Albert Otto. 1970. Exit, voice and loyalty. In Responses to decline in firms, organizations, and states. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- Jonas, Hans. 1985. The imperative of responsibility: In search of an ethics for the technological age. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
- Kahneman, Daniel. 2011. Thinking, fast and slow. New York: Farrer, Straus and Giroux.Google Scholar
- Mazzucato, Mariana. 2013. The entrepreneurial state: Debunking public vs. private sector myths. London: Anthem Press.Google Scholar
- Merton, Robert. 1973. The sociology of science. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
- Schomberg, Von. 2013. A vision of responsible research and innovation. In Responsible innovation: Managing the responsible emergence of science and innovation in society, ed. Richard Owen, John Bessant, and Maggy Heintz. Hoboken: Wiley.Google Scholar
- Scott, James C. 1998. Seeing like a state: How certain schemes to improve the human condition have failed. New Haven: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
- Sharon, Tamar, and Dorien Zandbergen. 2016. From data fetishism to quantifying selves: Self-tracking practices and the other values of data. New Media & Society. doi: 10.1177/1461444816636090.
- Swierstra, Tsjalling. 2013. Nanotechnology and technomoral change. Etica e Politica/Ethics and Politics 15: 200–219.Google Scholar
- ———. 2015. Identifying the normative challenges posed by technology’s ‘soft’ impacts. Etikk I Praksis – Nordic Journal of Applied Ethics 9 (1): 5–20.Google Scholar
- Swierstra, Tsjalling, and Hedwig te Molder. 2012. Risk and soft impacts. In Handbook of risk theory, ed. Sabine Roesser et al., 1050–1066. Dordrecht: Springer.Google Scholar
- Van Est, Rinie. 2014. Intimate technology: The battle for our body and behaviour. The Hague: Rathenau Instituut.Google Scholar
- Van Gunsteren, Herman. 1998. A theory of citizenship: Organizing plurality in contemporary democracies. Boulder: Westview press.Google Scholar
- Walzer, Michael. 1995. Thick and thin: Moral argument at home and abroad. Indiana: University of Notre Dame Press.Google Scholar