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D2.3 RRI pool of cases & their application

: Patel, Menisha; Jirtoka, Marina; Eden, Grace
: Menevidis, Zaharya; Ajami, Mohamad

Fulltext urn:nbn:de:0011-n-3237709 (2.3 MByte PDF)
MD5 Fingerprint: a2dc7aa941028e8de906ae0c1794d0b7
Created on: 23.1.2015

Berlin: Fraunhofer IPK, 2014, 141 pp.
European Commission EC
Report, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IPK ()
RRI; international responsible research and innovation; govermance; forum; observatory; responsibility

This deliverable discusses and reflects on the case study approach that was used in RESPONSIBILITY. The case study approach (that is our strategy for the production and collection of case studies) we use through REPSONSIBILITY is carefully tailored to meet the demands of the project, draw on the expertise of the consortium and also takes into account time constraints of the 3 year funded span of the project within this. The well-established practice of collecting and assessing case studies for insight into practice, is used to investigate the empirical reality of RRI. We begin by introducing the case study approach (Section 1). Here we provide an account of and justification for the case study approach that we have adopted through RESPONSIBILITY. We emphasise distinct aspects of the project, including the envisaged collection of case studies by contributors beyond the funded time span of the project, and the international nature of the consortium and the project. We also deliberate upon why the case study approach, in its ability to shed light on the practice of RRI is so important for RESPONSIBILITY, for closing the “gap” between empirical reality and theory, and developing an understanding of how we can implement RRI in practice. Importantly, we emphasise how case studies can develop an understanding of the theory in what should be done in association to the exploration of what is done in practice. This can provide a practical tool for furthering the RRI program. Following this, we reflect more upon how the body of 21 case studies were collected from within the consortium, and associated networks (Section 2). We show how the expertise of the consortium provides for a breadth of case studies that are diverse in domain, and also location around the world. Drawing on this we place emphasis on the requirement of a case study template (drawn from our theoretical understanding) to shape entries, in regards to ensuring consistency and comparability between case studies. We reflect on the challenges of developing a template, and also on why we as a consortium also created what is termed a ‘case reflection template’, in a bid to ensure that as many stakeholders as possible are able to contribute their own cases if they wish to do so. This section gives a detailed insight into our method, as designed for the distinct requirements of case study collection for RESPONSIBILITY. Having discussed how case studies were collected, we then show three examples that were contributed (Section 3). These are presented as they were provided by contributors, and are intended to give a flavour of the nature of issues that were raised, and an initial insight into the pluralism and unique contextual circumstances of each. This provides a foundation for us to give a more detailed insight of the review process (section 4) that was applied to the assessment of the case studies. We show how the case studies were used to develop existing theoretical understanding, through a contribution to the analytic grid (the theoretical underpinning regarding normative RRI), and also shed light on some of the challenges of developing a normative approach. We also discuss how the analytic grid can provide as a tool for considering case studies themselves, and how theory can give us the ability to scrutinize where aspects of ‘responsibility’ should potentially be present in practice. Finally we show how an important part of the review was assessing the case study template, as it is intended that the collection of case studies be sustainable beyond the funded timespan of RESPONSBILITY. The importance of a template that can be completed without any need for further instruction aside from that which is provided, was stated in order to facilitate the ongoing contribution of cases to develop our understanding, awareness and implementation of RRI. In the final section, before we conclude, we briefly discuss envisaged uses of the case studies for RESPONSIBILITY (section 5). Here we outline how they may be used in relation to the tools of RRI (the Observatory and Forum) that are being developed through RESPONSIBILITY. We also retain acknowledgement on the importance of the ongoing collection of case studies in the development of theory surrounding RRI. We conclude (section 6) by outlining the key features of the case study approach and justification for these, as has been discussed in some depth through the deliverable. At this stage we also dedicate a section to considering some of the issues this collection of case studies may face in the future, and how such challenges are not due to some shortcoming in our approach, but very much a part of such a broad, and ongoing endeavour such as RESPONSIBILTY.