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Home > Focus > Responsibility-by-design - Guidelines to develop long-term strategies (roadmaps) to innovate responsibly

Responsibility-by-design - Guidelines to develop long-term strategies (roadmaps) to innovate responsibly

by Jonathan Hankins [1], 27 October 2021

On 26 October 2021 the European Committee for Standardization (CEN) published the CWA 17796 Responsibility-by-design - Guidelines to develop long-term strategies (roadmaps) to innovate responsibly.

CEN [2] is an association that brings together the National Standardization Bodies of 34 European countries, providing a platform for the development of European Standards and other technical documents in relation to various kinds of products, materials, services and processes.

The CEN works together with national standards bodies to create documents established by consensus and approved by a recognized body that provide, for common and repeated use, rules, guidelines or characteristics for activities or their results, aimed at the achievement of the optimum degree of order in a given context.

In the case of this publication (a Workshop Agreement or CWA) the Italian national agency UNI (Italian National Unification) have been instrumental, working alongside the Horizon 2020 PRISMA [3] project within which the guidelines were developed.

The Workshop agreement provides guidelines to develop long-term strategies (roadmaps) for innovating responsibly, thereby helping organizations to achieve socially desirable outcomes from their innovation processes. The roadmaps encourage a "responsibility-by-design" approach that integrates considerations of technical, ethical, social, environmental, and economic aspects all along the research, development, and design process leading to an innovation.

After an introduction to the concept and aims of RRI and a series of definitions of terms used, the agreement offers an overview of interpretations and principles for RRI, using the oft-cited Stilgoe, Owen and Macnaghten framework principles of reflection, anticipation, inclusion and responsiveness, moving on to describe the methodological steps for RRI roadmap design involved before a section detailing the framework proposed.

The agreement closes with a series on annexes in which easy-to-interpret tables offer examples of RRI actions, tools, guideline applications, SWOT analysis for implementation in industry, tools for materiality and stakeholder analysis, methods for stakeholder engagement, criteria for impact analysis and key performance indicators before concluding with resources from other initiatives and a bibliography.

The Bassetti Foundation has been involved in the drafting of this document and are mentioned among the organizations and individuals that developed and approved the agreement, while the SMART-map [4] project is cited as one of early Initiatives to put RRI into practice in industry.

The document can be downloaded here [5].


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  1. 1] /schedabiografica/Jonathan Hankins
  2. 2] https://www.cencenelec.eu/about-cen/
  3. 3] https://www.rri-prisma.eu/
  4. 4] http://projectsmartmap.eu/
  5. 5] http://store.uni.com/catalogo/cwa-17796-2021-314554
CC Creative Commons - some rights reserved.
Responsibility-by-design - Guidelines to develop long-term strategies (roadmaps) to innovate responsibly
Read also: on SMART-map project and on TRANSFORM project.
Articles by:  Jonathan Hankins
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