Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) promotes public engagement, gender equality, ethics, open access, risk-assessment, science education and good governance. A common challenge in Central Europe is lack of RRI knowledge, skills and policy frameworks. This shortage limits the potential for innovation that drives responsible economic growth, competitiveness and well-being. The main objective of the ROSIE project was to use transnational cooperation to improve skills among entrepreneurs and innovation actors to promote RRI among small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Central Europe. Results of the project are tools and training module to improve RRI capacity, with a comprehensive RRI strategy and transnational Pilot to test tools and strategic proposals. Outputs benefit key innovation actors: public authorities gain a policy, framework, business support / sectoral agencies enhance SME support services, SMEs improve innovation processes.
The transnational approach used quadruple helix stakeholder engagement and covers: (1) Exchange and partner training on RRI tools that can help SMEs to understand RRI, identify RRI needs and define strategies, work with the innovation chain; (2) Development of RRI Road Maps in local & Central Europe areas, using transnational exchange and capitalisation; (3) Transnational Pilot Action (grouping nine local areas) for SME capacity building, RRI tool application and fund leverage.
The main outputs of the ROSIE project are the road maps (see particular results of road mapping in the compressed file) and national pilots. The road maps monitor the status of RRI in particular countries and propose the future steps for advanced implementation of RRI and its components. Piloting activities were focused on implementation of RRI principles in concrete SMEs and microcompanies in Central European Countries.
More information about the ROSIE project is available on the Facebook and LinkedIn. Follow the new information resource on RRI - The Responsible Research & Innovation Weekly. It is regularly updated list of articles focused on RRI collected by the paper.li service. There are also two videos recorded by project partners from Italy and Hungary.
ROSIE partners’ pilot actions built SMEs’ capacity to embed Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) into their business practices. The common goal for all pilots was to provide practical guidance to SMEs looking to implement an RRI path by adopting an improvement plan to define their long-term strategy towards RRI. To this end, the ROSIE RRI consultants (who received specific training in ROSIE activity A.T1.2) supported the pilot SMEs in the various phases of RRI implementation: from understanding the company’s RRI readiness to defining needs and target actors, until designing strategies to adopt RRI.
A total of 48 companies (including 39 SMEs, three large and six micro-companies) participated in the nine pilots that ran from Spring 2019 to Spring 2020. Partners selected the companies through specific calls. Benefits for companies chosen were State Aid relevant and managed accordingly. The outburst of the Covid-19 pandemic forced some partners to move the final pilot activities on-line. However, this was managed effectively, and the SMEs involved were able to complete the process.
The pilots were organised in the framework of the ROSIE Methodology for Pilot SME Capacity Building (deliverable D.T3.1.1). However, each partner had the freedom to choose the training format, tools and schedule that could best suit their SMEs. It is worth noting that partners primarily focused on the local priority sectors to engage the pilot SMEs effectively. Sectors ranged from (but were not limited to) the digital field, to constructions, food industry and tourism. This produced added-value for ROSIE, as the practical applicability of RRI to various business contexts could be piloted and the benefits, risks and difficulties tested.
Concerning the tools, while partners looked at the 3 ROSIE RRI tools (UNI/PdR, STIR and LivingLabs), various other training methodologies were also identified during the transnational exchange and applied in the pilots. Design-thinking process and the RRI Self-Check tool developed by the Horizon 2020 project COMPASS were two tools that proved particularly useful for the RRI pilot actions.
The training format varied among territories. The methodologies adopted ranged from one-to-one training delivered by RRI consultants to the staff of each SME, to design-thinking exercises involving more companies, to hackathons open to all pilot SMEs.
On March 30 CCSS
did the last activity with their pilot SMEs on-line. All micro-companies involved evaluated the whole ROSIE Pilot Action as very useful for their business - especially in these days - and are even open to the next collaboration in future projects or other activities led by CCSS.
Project ROSIE has 11 partners from 8 countries and 5 associated partners.