The State of the Art (SOA) Review by Key Research and Innovation Geographies

By SalM on September 29, 2020 in RRING NEWS

The RRING project team is working on a state of the art review (SOA) by key geographic research and innovation groups and Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI territories), which will be completed by the end of January.
The key geographical areas integrated into this report are the EU, including the associated countries and Russia, North America, South America, China, India, Africa, and SE Asia, including Japan and Korea.
In line with one of the objectives of the RRING project, the research is the first step towards “aligning RRI with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in order to obtain a global common result for the improvement of RRI and to address global challenges. “.

What is the most important SDG in each geography?


The RRING team conducted desktop research, using UN reports as well as voluntary national reviews (as submitted to the UN High-Level Political Forum (HLPF)) to identify the most important goals of sustainable development in each region (called ‘geography’ in this task)). As geographical regions, they use 5 regions defined by the UN for its regional commissions, and its monitoring of sustainable development goals, noting that each country is different and that regional averages can be misleading because 5 global regions show internal diversity.

Parts I and II record what UN sources indicate the current status of progress in implementing the SDGs; III. part relies on structured interviews with UNESCO experts on gender equality, scientific education, public engagement, open access and ethics to report on what they consider to be the most likely positive effects, which would indicate the achievement of a fully defined aspect of RDI could have on achieving a specific SDG / goal.

Finally, in Part IV, this report focuses on the reasons why respondents in Part III explained how RDI can address the objectives identified in the interviews.

The RRING project will go into further detail on what possible strategies exist to promote RRI while achieving the 2030 Agenda.


What is the most important SDG in each geography?


No state has been found to explicitly prioritize among the sustainable development goals or objectives. No regional group has explicitly adopted the hierarchy.

In the political agenda theory of which the SDGs are a part (Agenda 2030), all 17 SDGs are equally important from each country and region. This also applies to all their goals. All of them should be achieved by all countries by 2030.

From this perspective, the issue of this research is controversial even before we started researching it, because they are all important, no more than any other. This report is not on track to be achieved by 2030, and when there is sufficient information to set priorities, the most important are those that are least likely to be achieved.

The bulk of this report summarizes the findings of the joint work of several UN agencies to assess which SDGs are “on track” and “not on track” for achievements by geographic region. Those who are not on the road can be considered the most important.

If every country were to truly meet all the sustainable development goals and all the goals by the completion date, it currently seems that the most effort will be needed in what is not on the way. They may vary by region. For example, this report will conclude that SDG 1 on poverty is “most important” in Africa, not most important in Europe.


The Sustainable Development Goals Report 2019


In July 2019, the High-Level Policy Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) reviewed global progress in the last remaining set of sustainable development goals. 142 countries have now presented their voluntary national reviews. All SDGs are now featured on the HLPF. As mentioned above, this year actually closes the first cycle of implementation of the 2030 Agenda.

The Sustainable Development Report 2019, prepared by the UN DESA Statistics Division, was also launched in July with contributions from more than 50 international and regional organizations. It provides charts, infographics and SDG progress maps and presents a detailed analysis of selected indicators. In addition, the report highlights regional progress and analysis.

The report is accompanied by a comprehensive statistical annex and a Global Database of SDG Indicators with data on countries and regions that can also be accessed interactively on the Sustainable Development Goals Indicators website.

These data provide a clear overview of the progress made so far in the Sustainable Development Goals, as well as the challenges that still exist, in each country and region. This lets us select the data we need from countries and regions to determine if there are trends. However, since these are UN documents, they can only aggregate the information provided by the Member States to identify gaps (and call those gaps priorities). They do not reflect how each country or region implements SDGs, except in this broad sense of progress made on the basis of already known measurements (eg the quality of integrating SDGs into national legislation would not be visible in aggregate records, except through illustrations). Nevertheless, there are broad conclusions about the gaps that need to be addressed, which can be called priorities, because all countries have committed themselves to meet all the goals of sustainable development. These conclusions are supported by the most comprehensive policy process and available documentation and are considered a reliable source for setting priorities.

According to the report, the two main challenges facing the world are:

  • Climate change
  • Inequalities among and within countries

These two challenges are both corresponding to respectively SDG 13 ‘Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts ‘and SDG 10 ‘Reduce inequality within and among countries’. Though progress has been made, poverty remains an issue in many parts of the world, and hunger has actually been increasing in recent years. This issue has been posing a threat and it should be battled over the decades that are coming in front of us and we all need to put in a joint effort for these issues to be addressed properly in order to eradicate them from our societies.

 

RRING Project Involved in Horrizon Result Booster

By SalM on September 27, 2020 in RRING NEWS

About Horrizon Result Booster

Horizon Results Booster is a new package of specialised services to maximise the impact of R&I public investment and further amplify the added value of the Framework Programmes (FPs). It helps to bring a continual stream of innovation to the market and beyond. It will help to speed up the journey towards creating an impact, providing support to remove bottlenecks.

Benefit from “à la carte” tailor-made services designed to build your capacity for disseminating research results. Get support, increase your project results’ exploitation potential and improve your access to markets. Services are delivered to FP7 and H2020 projects at no cost and fully supported by the European Commission.

Important to mention is that RRING Project is involved in the Modules A and C, which will be presented to you in the following part of this article, and they are

  • Module A: Identifying and creating the portfolio of R&I project results
  • Module C: Assisting projects to improve their existing exploitation strategy

Module A

Identifying and creating the portfolio of R&I project results

This module supports the creation of a portfolio of results that are suitable for dissemination. Following the formation of the project groups/portfolios, you will receive guidance to identify similar ongoing projects from any other EU, national and regional funding initiatives. This service also includes a comprehensive mapping of the relevant stakeholders/target audience for each particular portfolio.

  • For a single project or project group from which at least one project was funded under FP7 or H2020, ongoing or closed.
  • This service is only available to projects or project groups that show a united interest in maximizing their dissemination potential.

Module C

Assisting projects to improve their existing exploitation strategy

This service will provide guidance and training to improve the existing project strategies of projects towards effective exploitation of key exploitable results.
The exploitation strategy will improve the following aspects:

  • review of the key exploitable results of the project;
  • revise, complement and clarify existing exploitation plans of project results and/or outline exploitation paths of results;
  • techniques to identify all relevant stakeholders in the exploitation value chain;
  • support to perform a risk analysis related to the exploitation of results.

This service is available for single project funded under FP7 or H2020, ongoing or closed with identified key exploitable results.

Involvement in the Go To Market

RRING Project will eventually be involved in the Go To Market of the, which has the aim of this service is to assist beneficiaries in making their project results ready for commercialization. The service will support beneficiaries to identify and/or address potential obstacles to the exploitation of project results and reach commercialization.

This service prepares project beneficiaries to take their project results to the market. The service provides assistance, coaching, mentoring, contacts with the market stakeholders regarding:

  • pitching, presenting a product(s) or service(s) to potential investors, identification of relevant events for pitching (forums, trade fairs, expos), identification of venture capital and/or traditional funding mechanisms, guidance on how to follow up a pitch;
  • support and guidance for Intellectual Property Rights (IPR): introduction to IP services, guidance regarding the procedures, definitions and regulations on IPR, as well as patenting, IP licensing and sale; freedom of operations – due diligence, transfer of IP;
  • training in innovation management (product, process and resulting organisational changes);
  • business services – co-designing a plan for commercial development, feasibility studies to assess potential business plans, support in the creation of spin-offs and start-ups;
  • examining exploitation/business implementation options;
  • introduction to non-EU funding opportunities available and support in your application.

This service is available for single project or project group from which at least one project was funded under FP7 or H2020, ongoing or closed, with identified key exploitable results, a dissemination and exploitation plan and an advanced business plan (or completed service 2).

The Science of Persuasion Offers Lessons for COVID-19 Prevention

By SalM on September 25, 2020 in News

Look to the science of persuasion, says communications professor Dominique Brossard, PhD. Brossard is part of a new National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine group called the Societal Experts Action Network, or SEAN, whose recent report lays out research-based strategies to encourage COVID-19–mitigating behaviors.

Brossard says the changes must feel easy to do—and to repeat, which helps to form habits. Past public health campaigns also suggest it’s wise to know and understand one’s target audience, and to tailor messages and messengers accordingly.

“It’s difficult to change people’s behavior at the massive level,” Brossard, chair of the life sciences communications department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said in a recent interview with JAMA. The following is an edited version of that conversation.

JAMA:You and your coauthors write that simply explaining the science of COVID-19 and its risks will rarely translate to a change in attitudes and behaviors, even if people understand and accept the facts. Why isn’t it enough to explain the science if you want to change health behaviors?

Dr Brossard:Because human beings rely more on the psychological dimensions of the risk than the quantitative aspect of the risk. If experts measure risk in numbers, such as the probability of getting harmed by something, human beings in general—you and me included—look at what we call the qualitative aspect of that risk: the potential magnitude of the effect, the potential dread, how much it may impact people [close] to us, and so on. So, psychological dimensions.

JAMA: How does that translate to people’s unwillingness to change their attitudes and behaviors?

Dr Brossard: If we’re asked to do something new, that will impact our willingness to do it for a variety of reasons. It might be because people around us, our social network, the norms around us tell us that this is something that’s not acceptable. It might be because it’s a little inconvenient. It might be because we forget about it. At the end of the day, when we perform certain behaviors, rarely do we think about the science that tells us why we shouldn’t do it and why this might be dangerous. We do it because, as social animals, we pay attention to cues that our minds tell us to pay attention to and our community and people around us tell us to pay attention to. Therefore, our behavior is really based on the psychological components rather than more quantifiable aspects.

JAMA: Your report recommends 5 habit-promoting strategies: make the behavior easy to start and repeat; make the behavior rewarding to repeat; tie the behavior to an existing habit; alert people to behaviors that conflict with existing habits and provide alternative behaviors; and provide specific descriptions of desired behaviors. How can these strategies be applied today?

Dr Brossard: People are more likely to act in healthy ways when it’s easy for them to perform that behavior. So let’s think in terms of hand washing, for example. It will be very important to have hand washing stations and hand sanitizer easily accessible to people. Making the behavior very easy to start and to repeat is very important. If you put a mask next to your front door, and it’s easy to grab when you go out the door, that’s going to be easy to implement and you may be more likely to actually do it again. If you want to encourage people to physically distance from other people around them, having signs on the floor is actually something that works. They don’t have to calculate in their mind: what does it mean to be physically distanced? How far am I from other people? They simply stand where the mark tells them. It makes the behavior easy to repeat and easy to perform.

JAMA: So you’re trying to take away any barriers to the behaviors?

Dr Brossard: Exactly. The idea is if you take away as many barriers as possible, you encourage people to repeat the behavior. And then you end up creating a habit.

JAMA: In your report you mentioned that having many hand sanitizer stations sets the norm—that it’s normal to hand sanitize.

Dr Brossard: Mask wearing and physically distancing are new habits we’re creating from scratch. As social animals, that’s not something we do, in general. However, hand washing is a habit that we would have hoped the population already had. The problem is it hasn’t been really implemented. People do it very inconsistently. If you have hand sanitizers everywhere, it’s very easy. As a matter of fact, in supermarkets, when you have the hand sanitizer at the door, people line up and do it. So it’s that idea of the social norm and making it sound like, this is something you do, it’s widely available, other people do it as well, and therefore, this is socially acceptable and highly encouraged, and we should just all do it.

JAMA: The report also discusses 10 strategies for communicating risk, like using clear, consistent, and transparent messaging. It feels like that’s the opposite of what we’ve had. What’s your take on the federal government’s messaging around COVID-19 mitigation?

Dr Brossard: I think that in this case what’s really crucial is the messaging at the local level. At the state level vs county level vs town level, having a consistent strategy, consistent messages, is very important. It’s clear that for public health–related issues, really what makes a difference is the action of local leaders. It’s really the community-based action that can change people’s behavior. At the local level people trust the doctors, the public health officials.

JAMA: Masks unfortunately have become politicized. Is it too late for universal masking to be accepted or do you think minds can still be changed?

Dr Brossard: You will always have extremes on both ends. The vast majority of the population will be somewhere in between. People that are extremely set on the attitude not to wear a mask, which is, by the way, a very, very small minority, are unlikely to change their views. However, all the others can change their views. People are reasonable in the sense that they want to protect their own, they want to protect the community, they want to have the economy reopen, and so on. So I would say, yes, there’s still hope. And we see it. Every week, our group at the SEAN Network publishes a summary of all the polls that address [COVID-19–related] behaviors. We see that mask wearing is increasing. It’s not yet at the level that we would like to make sure that we are protected, but it’s indeed increasing.

JAMA: You reported that highlighting crowded beaches or people who aren’t wearing masks can be counterproductive. Why? And what’s a better approach?

Dr Brossard: They end up thinking that it’s a more prevalent behavior than it actually is. Or it may actually prompt them to think, “Oh, I wish I was on the beach.” You want to highlight good behavior and make it sound like this is socially acceptable rather than highlighting undesirable behavior and making it sound like it’s more frequent than it actually is.

JAMA: So local leaders should emphasize that mask wearing is increasing, for example?

Dr Brossard: Exactly. The research on social norms is extremely, extremely important here. We tend to get cues based on the people around us. Human beings have something that we call fear of isolation. We don’t like to be the lonely person that is the only one doing a certain thing when the vast majority around us are doing another thing. So it’s very important to actually show, “Look, this is going in this direction. Political leaders from both sides of the spectrum are doing it.” To show that the desirable behavior is something that’s becoming prevalent and that this is the direction society is taking.

JAMA: One lesson in your report is that it’s important to concede uncertainty. Why should leaders say things like, “Based on what we know today…”?

Dr Brossard:This is a really key message of risk communication. If you highlight something as being certain and then the science changes and suddenly you say, “Well, wait a minute, actually this was wrong, and now it is this,” you destroy trust. Science evolves, particularly in the context of COVID-19. We are all discovering this virus. The social sciences have shown that acknowledging uncertainty will actually increase trust, much more than painting things as certain. So it’s very important to say, “Based on the science of today, this is what we should do.” It’s very important to show that it’s a work in progress.

JAMA: What about the messengers themselves? Have we tapped into social media influencers enough? And who are community influencers that have the power to change our collective behaviors?

Dr Brossard: It makes us think of the AIDS community, where the leaders of the communities were messengers in helping promote protective behaviors. Using messengers that are trusted by the target audiences and relying on social media is extremely important. And as far as influencers in the communities, this will depend from one community to the other. Let’s take Wisconsin, for example. Football is a sport that people enjoy regardless of their political ideology, age, and so on. So the [Green Bay] Packers are messengers that transcend potential barriers there. It’s important to find trusted messengers that can connect with the audience on social media but also face-to-face. That can be a trusted local business leader, for example.

JAMA: What have we learned from past public health campaigns, like antismoking and wearing seatbelts, that can be applied now?

Dr Brossard: In the ’70s, we had social marketing approaches that suggested that we needed to stop trying to educate people and actually adapt a marketing technique to social issues. The antismoking Truth campaign, as it was called, was a successful application of social marketing techniques. The idea that you need to segment your audience and tailor the message specifically to that audience is something that the Truth campaign very well illustrated. A specific audience that needed to be targeted was adolescents and teenagers, and one thing that adolescents do is rebel against authority. They don’t like people to force them to do things. So the Truth campaign tried to appeal to their drive for autonomy by showing them that the tobacco industry was taking advantage of the adolescent population. That was extremely powerful.

The problem is that a mass media campaign like that can be extremely, extremely expensive. That’s why it’s very important also to rely on what we think of as organic dissemination of messaging through social media, which we couldn’t do when the Truth campaign was put together.


To read the full interview please follow the link to the original source of this interview, JAMA Website.

Link to the full interview

How to measure progress on the priority areas of the Recommendation on Science?

By SalM on September 24, 2020 in News

As a part of the RRING project, we developed measures that can be employed at different levels in member state scientific systems to evaluate progress towards full implementation of the Recommendation on Science and Scientific Researchers.

Dr. Eric Jensen, Senior Research Fellow and Director of the International Consortium of Research Staff Associations (ICoRSA) Policy Research Unit, partner on the RRING, GRRIP and MUSICA Project, recently presented an indicators framework for the implementation and evaluation of the Recommendation on Science and Scientific Researchers (RSSR), focusing on 10 key priority areas.

The five levels of indicators developed through RRING can be used in concert to provide a progress picture in the implementation of the Recommendation on Science: including ‘top-down’ (government and funders) and ‘bottom-up’ (research staff, research performing organisations and general public) levels.


Levels of measurement


By applying indicators across the levels, we can track the progress of the implementation of these recommendations from national policy through to research funding systems, research performing organisations and finally to individual researchers.

1.  Member State (National Reporting)
  • Traditional focus for UN statistics
  • Representatives for the Member State report objective statistics to give a high level picture
2. Research Funding Organisations (RFOs)
  • A key way Member States can implement the RSSR is through research funding allocations and policies.
  • Prioritisation of mission-oriented funding, strings attached and selection criteria in competitive application processes can help align a Member State’s research system with RSSR principles.
3. Research Performing Organizations (RPOs)
  • The institutions employing research staff are central in the research system, affecting how researchers are treated, supported and maintained in sustainable careers.
  • While RPOs often take cues from governments and research funders, they have their own norms, policies and practices.
  • This means that such organisations are important to evaluate directly to understand progress at this crucial institutional level.
4. Research Staff
  • Individual research staff are a key player in the RSSR, whose voice should be included in assessments of progress in RSSR implementation.
  • We provide indicators to provide the ‘bottom up’ vantage point of individual researchers.
5. General public
  • A number of RSSR principles have implications for public views on the role of science.
  • Indicator dimension focusing on the public aspect of the RSSR priority areas can be aligned to existing measures such as The Wellcome Trust Global Monitor.

About Dr. Eric Jensen, Senior Research Fellow and director of ICoRSA Policy Research Unit


Professor Eric A. Jensen has a global reputation in social research and impact evaluation of public and stakeholder engagement with science. Jensen is currently Senior Research Fellow at ICoRSA (International Consortium of Research Staff Associations), working on the RRING (rring.eu) and GRRIP (grrip.eu) projects about responsible research and innovation.

Dr. Jensen’s track record includes over 100 publications- including peer-reviewed journal articles in Nature, Conservation Biology, Public Understanding of Science, and books and book chapters published by Cambridge University Press and Oxford University Press, as well as high profile government-commissioned reports- and dozens of major projects on science communication, public engagement and responsible research and innovation. He has worked as an evaluation trainer, advisor and consultant for many government departments, agencies and public engagement institutions globally, such as Science Foundation Ireland, Science Gallery Dublin, the European Space Agency, University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, CERN, Arts Council England, the National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement, Association of Science & Technology Centers and the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

Jensen’s PhD is in sociology from the University of Cambridge. His expertise spans themes relating to evidence-based science communication, public engagement, research impact and responsible research and innovation policies and practices.

For access to some of Dr Jensen’s publications see:
• https://warwick.academia.edu/EricJensen
• LinkedIn Profile

Global Perspective on how to be a good ally

By SalM on September 22, 2020 in RRING NEWS

At the “I, Scientist” conference held from September 16-19, 2020 on the importance of gender, career path and networking, Dr. Eric Jensen, Senior Research Fellow and Director of the ICoRSA Policy Research Unit, presented the global perspectives on how to be a good ally in the context of gender equality and ethnic diversity. These are the results of our research conducted by International Consortium of Research Staff Associations (ICoRSA) within the RRING Project.

The survey included 2198 responses with a completion rate of 70% or more. Five RRING World Regions were included in the analysis (following UNESCO regions of the world): European and North American States; Latin-American and Caribbean States; Asian and Pacific States; African States; Arab States.

As a part of the study, the research included questions on Gender Equality and Ethnic Minorities Equality.

Gender equality is linked to sustainable development and is vital to the realization of human rights for all. The overall objective of gender equality is a society in which women and men enjoy the same opportunities, rights, and obligations in all spheres of life. The specific context of the survey is related to gender equality in research and innovation work.

Dr. Jensen emphasised why is it important to include ethnic minorities in the research and innovation work while introducing the audience with, how different people from around the world think about how to be a good ally, and the role of gender and racial equality in their respected workplace.

 


Global Survey on the importance of Gender and Ethnic Equality


Gender Equality and Ethnic Minorities

  • There were a lot of responses around the world on numerous aspects of social responsibility in science and innovation.
  • 2198 Responses with a completion rate of 70% or more.
  • 539 responses with a completion rate of less than 70%
  • The average completion rate of the survey was 97%


First View:
Quantitative Results Gender Equality

It is important to promote gender equality in my research & innovation work.

There was a strong agreement all around the world concerning this statement.

  • Latin America has had the highest level of agreement.
  • Latin America was leading slightly with 62% strongly agreeing.
  • More neutral views in Europe and North America (15%).

“It is important to include ethnic minorities in my research & innovation work”

There was widespread agreement with this statement. The overall sentiment was leaning heavily on the agreement.

  • Latin America and the Caribbean slightly with 42% strongly agreeing.
  • Comparatively high percentages indicating a neutral view (13%-22%)
The main focus of the presentation was the open-ended responses about specific steps

The data was analysed in a specific approach called Content Analysis – a method for analysing open-ended dana on the steps taken by respondents to address the different dimensions of social responsibility.

All open-ended responses were analyzed by two independent coders (analysts) to ensure reliability.


Content Analysis

The content analysis includes the following steps:

  1. A coding guide for each open-ended question, providing analysts with detailed descriptions on how to categorize certain responses
  2. Coder briefings as introductions to the analyses
  3. Test-coding and de-briefings to tackle issues before proceeding with a final coding
  4. Calculating the inter-coder reliability as a measure of agreement between the analysts for each open-ended question.

Gender Equality

Follow-up question:

„Please list the steps you have taken to promote gender equality in your research and innovation work.“

Gender Equality Categories

GE1  -The first 18 percent were categorised as nonspecific, vague, platitude or virtue signalling (18% of participants)
Responses suggesting they promote or support gender equality without mentioning any practical steps.

  • Example: „Working on promoting gender in my work.“

These suggest promote or support gender equality but do not provide specific steps.
Not adding any specificity – a vague response.
a decent chunk of people gave this response.

GE2  – Gender equality in R&I, within an academic environment (81% of participants)

Responses indicating they take practical steps to promote gender equality in R&I activities.

This category has two subcategories:

Specific steps to enhance gender equality in R&I work

GE2.1.1 Gender equality in R&I, within an academic environment (general)
(30% of participants)

Responses about promoting gender equality without providing specific steps.

30 percent identified general things that they did.

  • Example: „My research topic has a gender element.“

GE2.1.2Gender Equality in R&I, within an academic environment (specific) (51% of participants)
These responses were indicating specific steps taken to ensure gender equality.

  • Example: “I have sought to promote gender equality in hiring office admin staff encouraging and promoting fellow women colleagues work in front of the higher management.”

Gender Equality Overview of steps taken

  • Other steps are taken: 27%
  • Fostering gender equality in the workforce: 24%
  • Gender as a substantive dimension in R&I work: 13%
  • Promoting/mentorship of female researchers: 11%
  • Fostering gender equality in staff recruitment: 8%
  • Promoting gender equality through delivering or attending training: 8%
  • Promoting women in R&I decision-making/senior positions: 6%
  • Integrating gender equality in research participant selection: 5%
  • Compliance with rules / regulations: 3%
  • Participation in or engagement with equality committees: 3%
  • Supporting female researchers publications: 2%

Gender Equality Categories

GE2.2.1 Supporting female researches publications, co-authorship, academic citations (2% of participants)
For example collaboration with female research partners and publication of a shared report.

  • Example:” Balance between women’s and men’s visibility in publication.”

GE2.2.2Integrating gender equality in research participant selection (5% of participants)
Selection processes and mechanisms such as representative samples.

  • Example: “Equal selection of the research participants by gender.”

GE2.2.3Fostering gender equality in R&I teams (24% of participants)
Ensuring parity between men and women, and diverse gender representation in research teams.

  • Example: “I make sure my research team represents women and men equally.”

GE2.2.4Integrating gender as a substantive dimension/focus of R&I content/practice (13% of participants)
R&I focuses on addressing gender equality issues, e.g. pay gap.

  • Example: “My current research is focusing on discrimination against women working in the technology industry.”

GE2.2.5Promoting/mentorship of female researchers (11% of participants)

  • Example: “I encouraged a female colleague to undertake a Ph.D., I will be on her supervisory panel in a mentoring role.”

GE2.2.6Promoting women in R&I decision-making roles and senior positions
(6% of participants) was a less prevalent step mentioned

  • Example: “Drafted an unprecedented number of women to selection panels of scientific grand applications

GE2.2.7Ensuring gender equality in process of recruitment and selection of R&I staff
(8% of participants) another step people took.
Efforts making recruitment in R&I contexts fairer for, or less discriminatory against women.

  • Example: “When hiring ensure that both men and women have equal opportunity.”

GE2.2.8 Promoting gender equality through delivering or attending training (8% of participants)

  • Example: “Promote gender equality in a public lecture.”

GE2.2.9Participation in or engagement with equality committees (3% of participants)

  • Example: “Meet and discuss issues with the Equality committee.”

GE2.2.10Compliance with rules, regulations, and legal obligations (3% of participants)

  • Example: “Signed up to provisions of my university and EU policies on gender balance and equality.”

GE2.2.11Other gender equality promotion step is taken (27% of participants)
Steps that do not belong to any of the above categories.

  • Example: “We use gender-neutral language in our reports and in general.”

GE3 Unclear/Uncertain (2% of participants)


Ethnic Equality

Follow-up question:

“please list the steps you have taken to include ethnic minorities in your research and innovation work.”

EM1Non-specific, vague, platitude or virtue signaling (18% of participants)
Responses suggesting they promote or support racial/ethnic equality without mentioning any practical steps.

  • Example: “Racial/ethnic equality is my entire focus.”

EM2 Racial/ethnic equality in R&I and the academic environment is the largest category (78% of participants)
Responses indicating they take to promote or support racial/ethnic equality in R&I activities.

This category has two subcategories:

Specific steps to enhance gender equality in R&I work

EM2.1.1Racial/ethnic equality within the R&I environment (general) (44% of participants)
Responses about promoting racial/ethnic equality without providing specific steps.

  • Example: “I involved various ethnic minorities in a new European project.”

EM2.1.2Racial/ethnic equality within the R&I environment (specific) (34% of participants)
Responses indicating specific steps taken to ensure gender equality.

  • Example: “Identify gaps areas where ethnic minorities are underrepresented in the organization, research and learn best practices on racial/ethnic equality.”

Distribution of different categories:

  • Integrating ethnicity as a substantive dimension of R&I work: 18%
  • Integrating ethnic equality in research participant selection: 16%
  • Fostering ethnic equality in the workforce: 15%
  • Other steps are taken: 15%
  • Promoting / mentorships of ethnic minorities: 10%
  • Ensuring ethnic equality in staff recruitment: 9%
  • Promoting ethnic equality through delivering/attending training: 3%
  • Supporting ethnic minorities’ publications, co-authorships, citations: 2%
  • Compliance with rules/regulations: 2%
  • Promoting ethnic minorities in decision-making: 1%
  • Participation in or engagement with relevant equality committees: 1%

EM2.2.1Supporting racial/ethnic minority researchers publications,
                  co-authorships, academic citations (2% of participants)
For example, collaborating with researchers from ethnic minority groups and publication of a shared report.

  • Example: “I encouraged ethnic minority researchers to co-author two of my papers.”

EM2.2.2Integrating racial /ethnic equality in research participant selection (16% of participants).
Selection processes and mechanisms as representative samples.

  • Example: “Ensuring the representation of minority research participants in the community.”

EM2.2.3Fostering racial/ethnic equality in R&I teams (15% of participants)
Ensuring the representation of ethnic minorities in research teams, and diverse racial representation in collaborations.

  • Example: “I make sure that races/ethnicities are appropriately represented in my working groups.”

EM2.2.4Integrating race/ethnicity as a substantive dimension/focus of R&I content/practice (18% of participants)
Addressing race/ethnicity issues in research, e.g. xenophobia

  • Example: “Research I am working on focuses on integrating indigenous people’s needs and concerns in forest fire and haze management strategies.”

EM2.2.5Promotion/mentorship of ethnic minority researches/innovators
(10% of participants)

  • Example: “Support ethnic minority researches to secure funding and industry linkages.”

EM2.2.6Promoting ethnic minorities in R&I decision – making roles and senior positions (1% of participants)

  • Example: “We promote staff according to certain diversity quotas, which include ethnic minorities.”

EM2.2.7Ensuring racial/ethnic equality in process of recruitment and selection of R&I staff (9% of participants)
Efforts making recruitment in R&I context fairer for, or less discriminatory against ethnic minorities.

  • Example: “I intentionally hire people from different ethnic groups in all roles in my research center.”

EM2.2.8Promoting racial/ethnic equality through delivering or attending training (3% of participants)

  • Example: “I joined a course on diversity in research and innovation.”

EM2.2.9Participation in or engagement with equality committees (1% of participants)

  • Example: “Participation in institutional committees tasked with promoting racial/ethnic equality/inclusivity.”

EM2.2.10Compliance with rules, regulations, and legal obligations (2% of participants)

  • Example: “My department follows the rules, regulations, and legal obligations (2% of participants)
  • Example: “My department follows the institution’s rules on ethnic diversity when hiring new staff.”

EM2.2.11Other racial/ethnic equality promotion step taken (15% participants)
This category was usually used for cases that had sufficient information to be coded for EM2 but insufficient information to code more precisely.

EM3 – Downplaying, minimizing, and excusing ethnic diversity issues in R&I (6% of participants)
Responses downplaying the necessity to address ethnic issues, or attributing a lower priority to them.

  • Example: “I agree it’s important but not at all costs.”
So these are the steps that people are taking around the world in the context of trying to enhance gender equality and the integration of ethnic minorities into Research and Integration work.

This presentation was covered in the conference “I, Scientist”: https://year2020.iscientist.de

Professor Eric A. Jensen has a global reputation in social research and impact evaluation of public and stakeholder engagement with science. Jensen is currently Senior Research Fellow at ICoRSA (International Consortium of Research Staff Associations), working on the RRING (rring.eu) and GRRIP (grrip.eu) projects about responsible research and innovation.

Dr. Jensen’s track record includes over 100 publications- including peer-reviewed journal articles in Nature, Conservation Biology, Public Understanding of Science, and books and book chapters published by Cambridge University Press and Oxford University Press, as well as high profile government-commissioned reports- and dozens of major projects on science communication, public engagement and responsible research and innovation. He has worked as an evaluation trainer, advisor and consultant for many government departments, agencies and public engagement institutions globally, such as Science Foundation Ireland, Science Gallery Dublin, the European Space Agency, University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, CERN, Arts Council England, the National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement, Association of Science & Technology Centers and the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

Jensen’s PhD is in sociology from the University of Cambridge. His expertise spans themes relating to evidence-based science communication, public engagement, research impact and responsible research and innovation policies and practices.

For access to some of Dr Jensen’s publications see:
https://warwick.academia.edu/EricJensen
LinkedIn Profile

Dr. Eric Jensen
Senior Research Fellow and director of ICoRSA Policy Research Unit

ICoRSA, e.jensen@icorsa.org
rring.eu
grrip.eu
musica-project.eu

Science Communication – An Introduction

By SalM on September 22, 2020 in News

About the Book

A concise, coherent and easily readable textbook about the field of science communication, connecting the practice of science communicators with theory. In the book, recent trends and shifts in the field resonate, such as the transition from telling about science to interacting with the public and the importance of science communication in health and environmental communication. The chapters have been written by experts in their disciplines, coming from philosophy of science and communication studies to health communication and science journalism. Cases from around the world illustrate science communication in practice. The book provides a broad, up-to-date and coherent introduction to science communication for both, students of science communication and related fields, as well as professionals.

“The book provides a concise, informative, comprehensive, and current overview of key issues in the field of science communication, the background of science communication, its theoretical bases, and its links to science communication practice. Especially the link between theory / research and practice is very well developed in the book and in the individual chapters. I think that is valuable for both readers new to the field of science communication, but also for those who identify with only one of these sides … it is indeed a comprehensive and concise overview, convincing in its aim to link theory, research, and practice and I will definitely use it for my lectures on science communication.” JCOM – Journal of Science Communication

Contents:

  • Foreword
  • List of Contributing Authors
  • Setting the Scene (Anne M Dijkstra, Liesbeth de Bakker, Frans van Dam, and Eric A Jensen)
  • Views of Science (Edwin Koster and Frank Kupper)
  • The Process of Communicating Science (Caroline Wehrmann and Anne M Dijkstra)
  • Science in Dialogue (Roald Verhoeff and Frank Kupper)
  • Informal Science Education (Anne M Land-Zandstra, Liesbeth de Bakker, and Eric A Jensen)
  • Science Journalism (Mark Bos and Frank Nuijens)
  • Risk Communication (Henk Mulder and Erwin van Rijswoud)
  • Health Communication (Madelief G B C Bertens, Joanne N Leerlooijer, and Maria E Fernandez)
  • Environmental Communication (Liesbeth de Bakker and Eric A Jensen)
  • Research in Science Communication (Anne M Dijkstra and Craig Cormick)

Edited By: 

  • Frans van Dam (Utrecht University, The Netherlands)
  • Liesbeth de Bakker (Utrecht University, The Netherlands)
  • Anne M Dijkstra (University of Twente, The Netherlands)
  • Eric A Jensen (Institute for Methods Innovation, UK)

Follow the link to the original article taken from the World Scientific website

https://www.worldscientific.com/worldscibooks/10.1142/11541

How to balance today’s profits and tomorrow’s impacts

By SalM on September 14, 2020 in News

The guest in this week’s Responsible Innovation Story is Joachim von Heimburg. He is an Innovation Architect and Executive Advisor on state-of-the-art innovation strategies and structures and has an extensive track record in designing responsible business models in industry. For him, Responsible Innovation provides the ideal framework to engage companies with aspects of responsibility.

“Companies have to balance profits and societal expectations. Responsible Innovation can help them!”

Our most important insights from this interview with Joachim von Heimburg:

  • In the age of large-scale disruption and uncertainty, companies have to live up to responsibilities beyond their organizational boundaries.
  • However, many still struggle to strike the balance between being competitive and caring for potential impacts of technology.
  • Responsible Innovation provides an ideal framework for companies to reflect on their role in society and create a unique selling proposition.

Click on the time stamps to watch the respective topics:

00:00 Responsible Innovation – A challenging mix for business?

02:50 A New Dimension of Value Creation

06:25 Sustainability and Innovation in Silos

08:28 Business Opportunities of Responsible Innovation

10:16 Synergies with Open Innovation

11:34 The Four Gear Model of Responsible Innovation

16:00 Closing the Innovation Gap

18:26 The Institutional Perspective

21:39 Boosting T-shaped Profiles

24:59 The Future of Responsible Innovation


This article was taken from the Living Innovation website.

Follow the link to the original source https://www.living-innovation.net/news/article?id=178&title=how-to-balance-todays-profits-and-tomorrows-impacts

‘Full force’ innovation swing toward emerging economies

By SalM on September 11, 2020 in News

Developing economies are showing “stellar innovation performance” as the landscape shifts towards Asia, while Sub-Saharan Africa leads global spending on education and investment.

Innovation continues to be dominated by Europe and North America, but this year’s Global Innovation Index shows that China, Vietnam, India, and the Philippines are consistently on the rise.

“An impermeable innovation glass ceiling exists that divides middle- and high-income economies. But for the past decade, innovation activity has moved towards Asia,” index co-editor Sacha Wunsch-Vincent tells SciDev.Net.

“In developing countries, governments largely shoulder innovation and R&D expenditures, to invest in innovation. The private sector investment in innovation is largely untapped.” Sacha Wunsch-Vincent, World Intellectual Property Organization

“This trend is undeniable and in full force.”

In South-East Asia, Thailand was ranked number one in business research and development, while Malaysia was top in high-tech net exports globally.

From Sub-Saharan Africa, Botswana led the world in education spending and Mozambique led investment. Mexico was the largest creative goods exporter worldwide.

The index is co-published by Cornell University, INSEAD and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), a specialised agency of the UN. Among its rankings is a list of the top 100 global science and technology ‘clusters’, which this year includes middle-income leaders Brazil and India.

Research funding

Finance and funding for innovative ventures from private equity is in decline across Asia, North America and Europe as the COVID-19 pandemic hits economies, the index shows. Developing countries and research-intensive start-ups will feel the greatest impact from any decline in innovation finance, experts say.

“Finance is crucial, and good ideas for innovation can be supported by a range of sources from governments, financial institutions, and venture capitalists, on the one hand, to the unpaid labour of ‘sweat capital’ and crowd funding on the other,” professor of innovation studies at the University of Queensland Business School, Mark Dodgson, tells SciDev.Net.

“What matters most is investment that factors in the risks of innovation, and is long-term in orientation.”

A central challenge facing innovators worldwide, but particularly those in developing countries, is access to stable sources of finance.

“In developing countries, governments largely shoulder innovation and [research and development] expenditures, to invest in innovation,” Wunsch-Vincent says.

“The private sector investment in innovation is largely untapped.”

He says that firms are closer to the marketplace, and therefore in a better position to decide the direction of innovation and find ways of successful commercialisation. “[T]hey would benefit from more incentives to invest in innovation,” he says.

The COVID-19 pandemic has slowed down global innovation at a time when it is most needed, the authors say. Yet, the pandemic has catalysed interest in innovative solutions for health, remote work, distance education, e-commerce and mobility.

“Innovation will be of critical importance in both finding the medical solutions to prevent and treat COVID-19 and to jumpstart economic growth in the aftermath of the pandemic,” says Wunsch-Vincent, chief of economics and data analytics at WIPO.

A European science conference last week heard that COVID-19 solutions are coming from the global South as the world science order shifts.

Analysts have struggled to fully quantify innovation in the global South, Wunsch-Vincent tells SciDev.Net. “Developing countries harbour much informal or grassroots innovations, which are not perfectly captured by hard innovation data,” he says.

The index is considered a yardstick for measuring innovation to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and aims to support evidence-based policy decisions.


This piece was produced by SciDev.Net’s Asia & Pacific desk.

This article was taken from the SciDev website. Follow the link to the original article

https://www.scidev.net/global/innovation/news/full-force-innovation-swing-toward-emerging-economies.html

Pandemic darkens postdocs’ work and career hopes

By SalM on September 9, 2020 in News

Eight out of ten postdoctoral researchers say that the global coronavirus pandemic has hampered their ability to conduct experiments or collect data. More than half are finding it harder to discuss their research ideas or share their work with their laboratory head or colleagues, and nearly two-thirds believe that the pandemic has negatively affected their career prospects, according to Nature’s first-ever survey of postdocs worldwide (see ‘Disruption and distress’).

The pandemic has shuttered or reduced the output of academic labs globally, slashed institutional budgets and threatened the availability of grants, fellowships and other postdoctoral funding sources. The fallout adds up to a major challenge for a group of junior researchers who were already grappling with limited funds, intense job competition and career uncertainties.

Nature’s self-selected survey, which ran from mid-June to the end of July and drew responses from 7,670 postdocs working in academia, included detailed questions on the impact of COVID-19 on the global postdoctoral community. Follow-up interviews with selected respondents and hundreds of free-text comments (see ‘The situation is grim’ for a selection) filled in an unsettled, precarious picture of postdoctoral research in the era of coronavirus. “The [pandemic] has compounded the pressures that postdocs were already under,” says Hannah Wardill, a cancer researcher at the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute in Adelaide, in an interview.

The survey, created together with Shift Learning, a market-research company based in London, was advertised on nature.com, in Springer Nature digital products and through e-mail campaigns. It was offered in English, Mandarin Chinese, Spanish, French and Portuguese. The data set relating to the COVID‑19 responses is available at go.nature.com/34wrre1. The full results are currently being analysed and will be released in November.

Uncertain job prospects

One per cent of respondents say that they have been diagnosed with COVID-19, and another 9% suspect that they have had the infection but were never tested. But concerns go far beyond the presence or absence of the virus. Some 61% of respondents say that the pandemic has negatively affected their career prospects, and another 25% say that its cumulative effects on their career remain uncertain.

Worries about one’s professional future are especially widespread in South America, where 70% of respondents say their careers have already suffered since the start of the pandemic. A biochemist in Brazil used the survey’s comment section to share her own concerns. She notes that postdoctoral contracts in her country usually last for just one or two years, and extensions are far from guaranteed, creating a tenuous situation for researchers who were probably already struggling to get by. “Here, we live in a reality where PhDs need to sell food on the street to support themselves financially, as most are unable to obtain scholarships or jobs,” she wrote.

Julieth Caro, a physicist at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, worries that the Brazilian government might shorten the length of her scholarship in a cost-cutting move. “The pandemic just makes me remember that science is not important to the government,” she says. She adds that her scholarship prohibits her from taking a job outside her field. With few physics jobs available, she teaches experimental physics as an unpaid volunteer.

Belief that the pandemic had already negatively affected career prospects were also common in North and Central America (68%), Australasia (68%), Asia (61%), Africa (59%) and Europe (54%). In China, where the virus was first detected, 54% of respondents said their career had already suffered and 25% said they weren’t sure.

Perceived impacts varied by area of study. Slightly less than half of researchers in computer science and mathematics thought that their career prospects had suffered, compared with 68% of researchers in chemistry, 67% in ecology and evolution, and 60% in biomedicine.

The impact of the pandemic has now joined the list of the top concerns in the minds of postdocs. Asked to name the three primary challenges to their career progression, 40% of respondents point to the economic impact of COVID-19, nearly two-thirds (64%) note the competition for funding, and 45% point to the lack of jobs in their field.

For those hoping to secure faculty jobs in 2020, the pandemic — and the widespread hiring freezes that have followed — could hardly have come at a worse time. A bioengineer in Germany used the comment section to explain his situation. “I had verbal faculty offers from multiple universities. During the COVID-19 pandemic, they practically froze the hiring but they did not even update me about it.”

An HIV researcher in the United States who started looking for tenure-track positions this year comments that the pandemic may be a breaking point. “It’s impossible to understate the impact that COVID-19 will have on our careers,” he writes. “I’d like to stay in academia, but that may no longer be possible.”

Thirteen per cent of respondents say they have already lost a postdoc job or an offer of one as a result of the pandemic, and 21% suspected the virus had wiped out a job but weren’t sure. More than one-third of researchers in South America report already losing a job, compared with 11% in Europe and 12% in North and Central America.

Sixty per cent of respondents are currently working abroad, a circumstance that only amplifies the pandemic’s potential impact. On top of everything else, many worry about the pandemic’s effect on their visas and their ability to stay in their new country. A biochemist from India who is currently working in the United States wrote, “I’m on a visa that will expire in January 2021. Because of the COVID lockdown, I lost three months of my work. So I might have to leave the lab and the country without being able to publish some of my findings.”

Experimental impacts

Eighty per cent of respondents say that the pandemic has hampered their ability to conduct experiments. One of those is Rakesh Dhama, a photonics engineer at Bangor University, UK. He was meant to travel to France earlier this year to finish experiments on a chip designed to kill cancer stem cells. “Everything was scuttled because of the coronavirus,” he says. “Now I won’t get any credit for planning that experiment.” He adds that his supervisor had acquired two pieces of equipment that could improve the accuracy of experiments, but says that no one is around to get the devices up and running. “Scientifically, coronavirus has really affected me,” he laments.

Dhama, who is from India, says that his UK visa was set to expire at the end of July, adding extra urgency to a job search that was already hampered by the pandemic. With the clock ticking, he applied for a Marie Curie fellowship from the European Commission in his field of photonics. “I had to put together a 10-page proposal on a new idea in 20 days,” he says. The proposal was accepted, and Dhama will start his fellowship at Tampere University in Finland in October, provided that he can get a visa to work in that country.

Experiments aren’t the only scientific activities that can suffer during a pandemic. Fifty-nine per cent of respondents said that they had more trouble discussing ideas with their supervisor or colleagues, and 57% said that the pandemic had made it harder to share their research findings. A molecular biologist in the United States commented, “I haven’t met my colleagues yet because of the coronavirus.”

Despite the widespread delays caused by the pandemic, slightly less than 10% of respondents say that they have received an extension on their fellowships or work contracts. Nearly two-thirds (63%) say that the duration of their position has remained unchanged, and 19% were currently unsure. Melania Zauri, a cancer biologist with a Marie Curie fellowship at the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre in Madrid, says that she was given the opportunity to take unpaid leave but was not offered a paid extension of her contract. Zauri notes that Spain is extending the contracts of many researchers supported by the government, but that researchers with prestigious external fellowships are left out. “We are being treated as the last wheels on the carriage,” she says.

Strained relationships

The survey included questions about supervisors, a role that takes on extra importance during a crisis. More than half (54%) of respondents said that their supervisor had provided clear guidance on managing their work during the pandemic, but one-third (32%) said that they weren’t receiving that sort of support from above. Twenty-nine per cent of respondents strongly or somewhat disagreed that their adviser has done everything they can to support them during the pandemic. Female respondents (28%) were more likely than male respondents (25%) to think that their supervisors fell short.

The free-comment section of the survey underscores how the pandemic has strained some supervisor–postdoc relationships. A molecular microbiologist in the United States expressed her concern about safety protocols during the outbreak. “My principal investigator pretended nothing was going on during the COVID-19 quarantine,” she wrote. “He requested everybody to keep working and he refused to wear a face mask until the university made it mandatory.” In a similar vein, a mycologist, also in the United States, said that lab members were “forced to continue to work with a lack of secure measures”.

Some postdocs have found small consolations in the pandemic. Although more than one-quarter (26%) of respondents say that the pandemic has somewhat or significantly impaired their ability to write papers, 43% say that writing has become easier. “The downtime has allowed me to focus on my writing,” Wardill says. “It’s a bit of a silver lining.”

Still, Wardill thinks that the pandemic has put the brakes on her work and career. As travel concerns grew during March, she felt forced to leave an ongoing research project at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands to return home to Australia. She was hoping the results and papers from that project would give her an edge as she applied for future funding, but now those experiments are on ice. “I’m at an important point in my research career, and I’m not as competitive as I would have liked to have been,” she says.

Wardill hopes that funders will take the pandemic into account when assessing the research outputs and productivity of applicants. They should acknowledge the impact,” she says.”This is something that’s affecting everyone.”


This article has been taken from The Nature website. Follow the link below to read the original article

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-02548-2

How open is your Open Innovation?

By SalM on September 9, 2020 in News

A growing number of companies apply Open Innovation. Their high expectations in search of the next big thing are often not met and their innovations remain incremental. One of the reasons might be that their Open Innovation is not open enough, as they only involve employees, their families and friends.

How can companies reach out to unusual suspects? How can they successfully integrate external stakeholders into highly specified, internal processes? What practical steps can they take when implementing Open Innovation methods?

Our guest in this week’s Responsible Innovation Story is Marcel Bogers, Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the University of Copenhagen and Senior Research Fellow at the University of California, Berkeley. For him, an open internal organization is key to leveraging the full potential of Open Innovation.

“Before opening up to stakeholders, you have to make sure that your business model is ready for integrating external knowledge.”

My most important insights from this interview with Marcel Bogers:

  • Over the past years, Open Innovation has strongly gained momentum in the business sector.
  • However, many companies struggle to effectively select and integrate external knowledge into their innovation processes.
  • Only if they establish an open internal organization, can they then use Open Innovation to its fullest – and help solving today’s grand challenges.


This article has been taken from the Living Innovation website. Follow the link below to the original post

https://www.living-innovation.net/news/article?id=162&title=how-open-is-your-open-innovation