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M. Burget, E. Bardone, M. Pedaste

University of Tartu (ESTONIA)
The notion of “Responsible Research and Innovation” (RRI) has gained more and more importance within the European Union research policy [1]. Generally speaking, RRI is an emerging theoretical framework informing a new way to interpret the meaning that research and innovation can have in and for society along with their role in tackling the so-called “grand-challenges of our times”. Considered as a more open and inclusive approach to the governance of science, RRI constitutes a challenge for science education. As the process of discussing the role of research and innovation has been opened so as to include all societal actors (including citizens), science education acquires a strategic role in promoting scientific literacy and a culture of science among the future generations of citizens.
The present study aims to shed light on RRI so as to provide a starting point for discussing how RRI can be profitably applied in science education. More specifically, this study is meant to identify the main conceptual dimensions characterizing RRI as they have emerged in the current literature. Such a challenge implies the active involvement of educators and educational researchers in envisioning new ways in which to address fundamental questions revolving around science and its meaning in today’s society.
Methodologically speaking, the present study provides a literature informed basis for addressing the common understanding of the term. The literature review was conducted in EBSCO database and the search term was “responsible research and innovation”. The analysis was based on articles published in academic journals. The term search was conducted within the full text, and the sources had to be peer reviewed. As a result, the sample of the literature review consisted of 35 RRI-related articles.
Dimensions in the study have been identified so as to detail the general framework of RRI and to understand the potentiality of the concept. The attention was paid both on how the dimensions were termed, described and how they emerged in academic discussions. The dimensions were grouped: for example, the dimension “actors” by Stahl [2] was grouped under “inclusion”, or “transparency” by Forsberg et al. [3] was grouped under “responsiveness”. Based on the literature review, four dimensions of RRI were found: inclusion, anticipation, responsiveness and reflexivity. Additionally two emerging dimensions that were not singled out explicitly as dimensions, appeared: sustainability and governance.
In conclusion, the six dimensions that have been identified in the present study provide the basis of unified understanding of RRI and create a possibility for further discussions about RRI in education.

[1] Owen, R., Macnaghten, P., & Stilgoe, J. (2012). Responsible research and innovation: From science in society to science for society, with society. Science & Public Policy (SPP), 39(6), 751-760.
[2] Stahl, B. C. (2013). Responsible research and innovation: The role of privacy in an emerging framework. Science & Public Policy, 40(6), 708-716.
[3] Forsberg, E., Quaglio, G., O'Kane, H., Karapiperis, T., Van Woensel, L., & Arnaldi, S. (2015). Issues and opinions: Assessment of science and technologies: Advising for and with responsibility. Technology In Society, 42, 21-27.