Background and purpose of the proposed presentation
Responsible research and innovation (RRI) is an approach that anticipates and assesses potential implications and societal expectations with regard to research and innovation, with the aim of fostering the design of inclusive and sustainable research and innovation with a particular emphasis on stakeholder participation (The EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation). Von Schomberg (2013, p. 1), states that ‘RRI should be understood as a strategy of stakeholders to become mutual responsive to each other and anticipate research and innovation outcomes underpinning the “grand challenges” of our time for which they share responsibility’.
The workshop presenters are members and work packages leaders in the EnRRICH project, whose aim is to raise awareness of RRI within higher education and to assist academics, students, and researchers to become RRI proficient. This workshop will equip social work researchers with the skills and knowledge to become RRI proficient. This will make a contribution to enhancing capacity within the social work profession to participate in European Commission Horizon 2020 studies and research.
A summary of the main points of the presentation
1. A critical examination of the main tenets of the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 responsible research and innovation framework;
2. Training to understand and employ RRI in the innovative design and implementation of social work research, with a particular focus on power, social justice and stakeholder partnerships;
3. Practical training on the use and application of RRI tools and concepts by participants in the workshop to critically reflect on research design in social work;
4. RRI places a particular focus on the participation of stakeholders, particularly civil society organisations, in research.
How the proposed presentation addresses one or more of the conference aims and themes
The workshop is connected to the main conference theme as it concerns a specific challenge raised by the diversity of interests and stakeholders involved in the complex field of social work practice and research: the responsibility challenge.
Different stakeholders concur to determine the outcomes and impacts of social work. That poses the responsibility issue at the very core of social workers' professional mandate. Similarly, research - and, notably, applied research (such as community-based research, action research, evaluation research) - must reserve specific attention for the responsibility issue. Which is a complex one, since responsibility cannot be regarded just as a research object, as it concerns method, ethics, outcomes and impacts for both social workers and researchers. Thus, the workshop specifically connects to subthemes 3 and 6.
Conclusions from and implications of your presentation for practice, policy or subsequent research
RRI has a particular resonance with social work as it shares a focus on social justice issues, on partnership relationships, and the recognition of situated, experiential knowledge. This workshop also serves to highlight the linkages for social work research with broader Horizon 2020 initiatives and the attendant avenues for affecting policies and practice in areas relating to central RRI tenets such as open access, research integrity and gender.