Call for Papers
Abstract Submission Deadline
Extended: 30 January 2023
Please note that abstract submissions are now closed.
*Extended: Friday 17 March 2023
After a double-blind review process, you will be notified of acceptance/rejection.
Final Submission Deadline
Friday 5 May
3 presentation formats are available: full paper, poster or speed talk.
Monday 22 May
For inclusion in the programme, (at least) the presenting author must register by the above date
The Eu-SPRI 2023 summer Conference will be held at the University of Sussex in Brighton, UK on the 14th – 16th of June. Papers for the conference will be prepared in a two-step process, with abstract submissions invited in the first step, and full papers / posters / speed talks invited in the second step.
Eu-SPRI 2023 Conference theme: Research with Impact
In recent years, Science, Technology & Innovation policy globally has increasingly focused on ensuring that researchers engage with wider stakeholders to deliver positive economic impact and address societal challenges. This reflects the growing societal expectations placed on research and innovation, and increased concerns about how well research systems are aligned with the changing needs of society. Demand for research with impact has generated changes in how research is funded, evaluated, organized and disseminated.
There are associated changes in the nature of knowledge production too, with new forms of inter-disciplinary, cross-organisational collaborations and knowledge exchange processes being supported. Demands to support research with impact create new challenges for researchers and STI policy makers, and raises new questions for STI policy researchers. Eu-SPRI 2023 will be a venue for exploration of these questions amongst international colleagues.
In addressing this year’s conference theme, Research with Impact, we will explore a range of issues including:
1. How is impact from research defined, and what kinds of research generate impact?
2. How do societies support the research needed to generate economic, environmental and societal change?
3. How can research funders influence the generation of impact?
4. What are the characteristics and behaviours that enable researchers to best achieve impact from their work?
5. How are research findings translated for stakeholders, received by them and used?
6. How are research and impact evaluated?
7. How can STI policy researchers achieve impact with their own research?
Call for Papers General Guidelines
Authors are invited to submit an abstract by the January deadline, which will then be peer-reviewed. If this is accepted, authors are required to submit a full paper/ poster/ speed talk by the 5th May deadline.
Abstract Submission process: All submissions will be managed using the ExOrdo conference platform (detailed information follows). A 1000-word abstract that contains specific information (as detailed below), will need to be developed and then uploaded (in PDF format), onto the ExOrdo platform. Once in ExOrdo, authors will be able to add information related to their submission, including all author/s details, selection of the presenting and corresponding author, the preferred format of their presentation, and the selected special session or track that best relates to the submission.
Presentation format: We invite presentations in three formats:
full paper presentations
You will be able to indicate your preferred format within the ExOrdo submission system. The organisers will make every effort to accommodate your preferred format on the programme, however please note that final confirmation of the format of your presentation is subject to capacity and there is a chance that you will be asked to present in a different format.
Multiple submissions: If you wish to submit several abstracts, each submission will need to be completed separately.
Presenting author: Please note that authors are expected to present no more than one submission at the conference, although an author may make more than one submission.
Abstract review: Abstracts will be evaluated through a double-blind review process by members of the conference’s international scientific committee and special session and track organizers. The conference organising committee expect that authors will be notified of acceptance / rejection by Friday 17th March 2023. The notification will include feedback to the author(s). Please kindly note that the decisions of the conference organising committee are final.
Final submission: Inclusion in the programme of your final full paper / poster / speed talk is subject to:
a) uploading a final submission in ExOrdo, by Friday 5th May 2023, 23:59 GMT and
b) at least one author registering for the conference by Monday 22nd May, 2023, 23:59 GMT.
We ask that authors follow the detailed final submission guidelines provided to them via ExOrdo.
The deadline for abstract submissions has now been extended to Monday 30th January 2023, 23:59 GMT.
Notification of decision will be shared with authors by Friday 17th March 2023.
Authors of accepted submissions will then be asked to upload their final full paper / poster / speed talk, in order to be entered into the conference programme. Deadline for final submissions is Friday 5th May 2023, 23:59 GMT.
Conference registration via our online shop opens on Friday 17th March 2023.
Conference registration closes on Thursday 1st June 2023. The presenting author will need to have registered for the conference by Monday 22nd May 2023, 23:59 GMT.
The conference will be held from Wednesday 14th June to Friday 16th June 2023.
ExOrdo: Our conference paper submission system
When submitting your Abstract submission via the ExOrdo platform, you will be prompted to select or add information that relates to your submission. Please ensure you complete each step in order for your submission to be completed.
Abstract submission requirements
Abstracts should be submitted in PDF format via the ExOrdo platform.
Authors should prepare abstracts of no longer than 1000 words (excluding both the title, tables, figures and references).
Abstracts should include the following within the PDF document:
- Title of submission
- Title of your preferred special session or track (or if none - choose open track)
- A clear research question
- Conceptual literature
- (Expected) results
- Policy implications (optional, but encouraged)
Please note that no author information should appear within the abstract as abstracts will be double-blind peer-reviewed.
All authors will be asked to express a preference regarding the presentation format from these presentation formats:
- Full paper presentation
- Fully designed poster (for a poster session)
- Extended abstract for Speed Talks
All authors will be asked to submit an abstract of up to 1000 words for this first stage, irrespective of the presentation format selected.
Authors are invited to submit their abstract to just one of the conference's tracks (you will find them under 'Topics ' on the ExOrdo platform).
You may select from two suggested Topic groups:
A) Special Sessions and Tracks organised by Scholars in the field, or
B) Open Track option.
Please choose your preferred track title, which you are required to add on your PDF and on the ExOrdo system, from the ‘Conference Track Topics’ list (see below).
When submitting your abstract in ExOrdo, you will be required to add up to 5 keywords that best describe your submission. Suggested keywords and/or short phrases are provided - or you can input your own to best describe your work if the keywords provided are not sufficient.
Please use a semicolon (;) to delimit your selected keywords and/or short phrases.
List of provided Keywords
Corporate Social Responsibility
Diffusion of innovation
Early career researchers
Economic and societal impact
Foreign Direct Investment
Fourth Industrial Revolution
Freedom of science
General purpose technologies
Global value chains
Intellectual property rights
Internet of things
Large Technical Systems
Low carbon transformation
Mergers and acquisitions
National innovation system
National research institutes
New firm creation
Online labour markets
Public Research Funding
Randomized controlled trial
Small and medium enterprises
Smart specialization policy
Sociology of science
Topic Group A: Special Sessions & Tracks organised by Scholars in the field
1. Digital automation technologies and the future of work Past impacts and emerging technologies’ trends (Fabien Petit, Sugat Chaturvedi, Tommaso Ciarli, Yuchen Guo, Ekaterina Prytkova, Maria Savona)
We invite you to submit papers that present novel results on how digital automation technologies transform labor markets through occupations and tasks, industries, and skills. This track invites contributions to tackle three complementary dimensions. First, we invite papers that look at the past impacts of digital automation technologies (e.g. earlier automation waves, Information and Communication Technologies) to understand how these technologies have reshaped organizational structures, labor markets, and trade relations, over the last decades. Second, we invite papers that aim to identify emerging technologies (e.g. AI or robots) and estimate their potential impact on labor market outcomes and inequality. Third, we would like to host papers that use novel empirical methods using real-time data—such as online job ads which provide information on skill demand and firm characteristics—to shed light on the interactions between automation technologies, firms, and skills. This track is proposed by the SPRU team of PILLARS (Pathways to inclusive labour markets), a project funded by the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme.
Keywords: Automation technology; Labor market; Tasks; Skills; Industries; Occupations
2. Capacity for delivering transformative innovation (Susana Borrás, Karoline Rogge, Jakob Edler)
Delivering transformative innovation for addressing grand challenges requires the engagement of manifold stakeholders in multiple sectors, and arenas, who need capacity to engage. It also requires favorable institutional frameworks with the aggregate capacity for transformation. Innovation policy literature has studied the capabilities of governmental agencies implementing missions and directional innovation (Uyarra, Zabala-Iturriagagoitia et al. 2020) (Breznitz, Ornston et al. 2018) (Kattel and Mazzucato 2018), and the ‘policy capacity’ needed for designing transformative policy instruments and mixes (Gieske, van Buuren et al. 2016) (Kern, Rogge et al. 2019). The urban studies literature studies the ‘governance capacity’ for transforming complex urban systems towards sustainability (Wolfram, Borgstrom et al. 2019) (Castan Broto, Trencher et al. 2019) (Hölscher and Frantzeskaki 2020). These studies are embedded in various disciplinary traditions, on state capacity (Lodge and Wegrich 2014) (Matthews 2012) (Meckling and Nahm 2018), on policy capacity (Painter and Pierre 2005) (Wu, Howlett et al. 2018), on governance capacity (Matthews, 2011; Howlett & Ramesh, 2016), on dynamic capabilities (Teece, Pisano et al. 1997) (Helfat and Peteraf 2009) (Nooteboom 2009), and on absorptive capacity (Cohen and Levinthal 1990) (Zahra and George 2002).Yet, an important number of conceptual, and especially empirical questions about the capacity for delivering transformative innovation remain open. This track calls for papers (particularly empirical papers) addressing these gaps, in topics such as (but not only): Comparative studies of transformative capacity across countries, regions, sectors / systems, governance levels or policy fields; the relation between capacity at governance, policy, and organizational levels in the context of transformative innovation; the capacity of public sector organizations in the implementation of transformative innovation policies, and their interplay in policy mixes; the relative importance of skills and resources for the capacity of public sector organizations’ in the policy practice, policy-making, and policy evaluation of transformative and system innovation; processes and provisions for capacity-building for transformative innovation in the public sector, the private sector, and the tertiary sector organisations; the capacity of actors and coalitions needed to overcome political resistance to transformative innovation and favourable policy and institutional change
Keywords: Transformative innovation; capacity; capabilities; governance; policy mixes; implementation; grand challenges; sustainability transitions
3. Tensions in sustainability-oriented innovation policy (Susanna Horn, Kirsi Hyytinen, Mika Nieminen, Matti Pihlajamaa, Nina Rilla, Hanna Salo)
Innovation policies and related research increasingly incorporate sustainability objectives alongside traditional objectives related to growth and competitiveness. For example, transformative and mission-oriented innovation policies reflect a change toward stronger sustainability. New sustainability objectives and policy rationales rarely integrate smoothly with the existing policy regime. Instead, they “compete with one another for the imagination of policymakers and, ultimately, citizens” (Schot & Steinmueller, 2018, p. 1555), creating tensions. Tensions may arise, for example, from poor policy coherence if new policy goals and instruments are not aligned with existing ones. Past research on sustainability tensions suggests that while some tensions may be resolved, others may have a paradoxical nature and be unresolvable in principle. It is proposed that paradoxical tensions may be turned into an advantage if different sides of the paradox are promoted separately to avoid conflicts, and various structures, organizational policies, and institutions are implemented to link or accommodate both sides of the paradox. Given that policymakers increasingly face tensions originating from the multitude of innovation policy goals, we invite contributions that aim to investigate the nature and implications of tensions related to sustainability-oriented innovation policy.
4. The emotions and art of the societal impact of research (Joaquín M. Azagra-Caro, Caterina Benincasa, Elena Denia, Anabel Fernández-Mesa, Andrés Salas-Vallina, Ana Tur-Porcar)
Societal impact of research is gradually steering science agendas. Adapting to this change increases the need to understand the emotional links between researchers and their stakeholders, consider novel impact channels, like art, and novel approaches to the evaluation of impact, like the representations of research impact in popular culture. This track calls for full or early-stage articles on the relationship between the societal impact of researchers and their emotions, their use of art to achieve impact and the representations of the quest for impact in popular culture. : Do researchers with societal impact exhibit particular emotions or other psychological characteristics? Is it different according to the type of stakeholder addressed? Do these researchers achieve higher satisfaction and well-being? : To what extent is the use of literary fiction and other artistic activities linked to societal impact of research? What are the underlying mechanisms? . Does the quest for impact in research appear in literature, films or comics? Do these depictions praise the role of researchers on solving societal problems? To what extent can these portraits generate evidence of societal impact of research?
Keywords: University-industry interaction; Science-society links; Knowledge transfer; Academic engagement; Psychology of science; Public awareness of science; Science communication; Representations of science
5. Cities & Regions in transformation: anchoring the logic of transformative innovation policy in sub-national context (Mart Laatsit, Iryna Fil Kristensen, Lasse Bundgaard)
The sudden emergence of the term ’transformative innovation policy’ has changed political rhetoric. The ‘traditional’ focus of innovation policy on increasing economic growth and prosperity is being contested by a new paradigm that promotes a socio-technical change for addressing grand challenges through innovation policy. This change, however, is context-sensitive. This implies that the process of new path development unfolds differently across various place-based locations. We propose in this conference track to comprehensively investigate what constitutes transformative policy in a regional or city context and what are the critical success-factors. Question to be addressed in this panel include (but are not limited to): What is the role of regions and cities in tackling grand societal challenges? What should be the balance between national and place-based policies in tackling grand societal challenges? What is the role of regional/city-level innovation policies in tackling grand societal challenges? What should be the balance between national and regional/city-level innovation policies in tackling grand societal challenges? How should the current regional/city-level innovation policies be improved in order to respond to the new demands? How should the emerging approaches of ‘mission-oriented’ and ‘transformative’ innovation policy be translated to sub-national contexts?
Keywords: transformative innovation policy; place-based innovation policy; regional innovation policy; city-level innovation policy; challenge-driven policy
6. Prioritising science, technology, and innovation that address diverse societal challenges (Diego Chavarro, Tommaso Ciarli, Hugo Confraria, Ismael Rafols)
Despite the importance of science, technology, and innovation (STI) to address human challenges, there are alarming mismatches between STI priorities and the priorities underlying social challenges: there is more investment in military technologies than on addressing hunger. The mismatch between STI priorities and social challenges have been confirmed, for instance, by studies on health, agriculture, AI, and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). What produces this mismatch? How can research and innovation be steered to address the diversity of local and global social challenges? How to assess which pieces of knowledge or innovations are aligned to which social challenges? In this special session, we invite authors to present their original research addressing these and related fundamental questions. Examples of subjects may include (but is certainly not limited to): Analysis of the relation between STI priorities and social challenges; Funding and policy programs to promote STI related to social challenges; Obstacles for uptake of research outcomes to mobilize concrete actions to achieve social impact; Development of effective, equitable research collaborations between high- and low-income countries to prioritise social challenges that are locally relevant. We welcome contributions from policy and research perspectives.
7. Struggling for Relevance: Investigating How Researchers Design and Conduct Transdisciplinary Research (Annemarie Horn, Lotte Krabbenborg)
Transdisciplinary research (TDR) −in which diverse academic and non-academic actors collaborate− is called for in response to complex issues. These approaches hold the promises of increasing knowledge democracy and ensuring the relevance and usability of knowledge. They, however, also pose difficulties, such as balancing societal relevance with scientific rigour, dealing with power imbalances, and integration of knowledge without brushing over differences to reach consensus. Consequently, it shows that in practice TDR often does not succeed to translate into the empowerment of actors and democratization of research practices and knowledge.
Therefore, this track focuses on research into how TDR can be designed and conducted to be adequate for its (diverse) goals. In particular, we aim to focus on how TDR projects are designed and executed, which factors shape design and execution, and how TDR design and execution can impact its outputs and outcomes. As such, we invite conceptual and empirical contributions on topics concerning: Extrinsic and intrinsic motivators for TDR; Design choices and principles that are deployed to support TDR practices; Knowledge exchange practices in TDR projects; The translation of TDR approaches into outcomes and benefits for different actors; Competencies and roles of researchers for TDR.
8. Research that leads to endings: Reflections about Impacts of Destabilisation and Discontinuation Research (Peter Stegmaier, Lea Fünfschilling, Frédéric Goulet, Bruno Turnheim)
With this track we would like to stimulate reflection on how research on Destabilisation, Discontinuation, and Decline (DDD) is received in policy, civil society, and corporate management and how (far) it can trigger impact.We are thinking of organisations that deliver strategic intelligence directly to decision-making and negotiation arenas, but also of more fundamental research that develops indirect influence. Sometimes, research is used to justify and inform the exit from innovation policies and socio-technical systems directly or indirectly. More specifically, we want to investigate whether and how research on DDD can also lead to the termination of an innovation, policy, business model, or else. This can be done, for example, by gathering specific expertise on the scenarios, means, conditions, and consequences of abandoning a technology or innovation; or by assessing how far the phase-out should go - parts of a socio-technical system or entire broad system contexts, pathways, or trajectories. We assume that there is DDD research with a claim to have impact that does not operate with these terms at all (but calls itself whatever fits the institutional context), and such DDD research that rather uses such terms to claim a specific competence.
9. Governance and policy processes for transformative research and innovation: Towards an empirical comparative perspective (Taran M. Thune, Iris Wanzenböck, Matthijs Janssen, Mart Laatsit)
Past years have seen extensive conceptual work on a ‘new generation of innovation policy’ to tackle societal challenges and drive transformative change. Notwithstanding, we still lack empirical insights on how these policies are developed, get implemented, and what it takes from government bodies and public administration to do so. This session invites contributions to policy processes, policy-making, and the governance of transformative research and innovation. We aim to gather new insights from in-depth case and comparative studies, investigating past or recent examples of policy implementation beyond one policy instrument. Policy studies of other fields with implications for transformative innovation are equally encouraged. Studies drawing on theories of public policy, public administration, governance and organisational studies and their empirical application around these topics are welcome: Public sector, policy and government organisations (including public-sector capacities, policy entrepreneurship or coordination practices); Politics, participation and representation of diverse interests in policy processes (including the role of contestations, power, political cultures, stakeholder involvement or the role of experts/expertise); Policy implementation tools, processes and related challenges (including top-down/bottom-up implementation challenges or multi-level interactions). Our ambition is to create a research community of scholars around the governance and policy implementation of mission-oriented and transformative innovation policies.
Keywords: new generation of innovation policy; policy process; public administration; policy implementation; comparative empirical studies
10. Defining, evaluating, and learning from the impacts of research in agricultural innovation systems (Genowefa Blundo Canto, Angela Vasquez, Mireille Matt, Kevin Heanue, Marina Apgar)
Agricultural research interventions are increasingly carried out and analysed as complex processes of societal change. This calls for appropriate design and evaluation methods, pushing the frontiers of research impact evaluation beyond traditional accounting measures and towards a finer-grained understanding of the systemic transformations that research actions contribute to generate. This involves considering agricultural innovation systems, the mechanisms enabling these transformations, and the potential role of transdisciplinary approaches. The proposed session aims to generate cross-learning and debate on: 1. How is agricultural research impact defined, by whom and for whom?; 2. How does this determine the evaluation questions addressed and the methods used?; 3. How is complexity addressed in these methods?; 4. Under what conditions do the different methods discussed work best? What do we learn from the different ways of evaluating agricultural research impacts and on its role in agricultural innovation systems?
Keywords: Impact evaluation; outcomes; innovation; system thinking; complexity; methods
11. Advancing Networks of Power: carrying Large Technical Systems theory to the future (Katherine Lovell, Simone Vannuccini, David Eggleton, Aslı Ates, Marc Hudson)
This research track invites papers that use Large Technical Systems (LTS) approaches, marking 40 years since Thomas Hughes’s landmark book: Networks of Power. Large Technical Systems are vital components of our societies with economic and environmental impact. LTS theory can also shed light on the development of new technologies, interfacing existing systems, and the reimagination of legacy systems. We aim to build on linkages between LTS and innovation studies, catalyse discussions across different perspectives on LTS approaches, and to encourage the re-evaluation and application of LTS to confront challenges. Therefore, we especially welcome papers examining desirable changes in existing socio-technical systems to meet Grand Societal Challenges. Other papers may wish to understand how LTS concepts and building blocks (such as a socio-technical seamless web, reverse salients, systems-building, momentum, and LTS lifecycles) might deliver insights for understanding and navigating future policy, innovation, and transitions challenges. Research papers in this track can include (but are not limited to): Reviews and reflections on LTS theory and research; theoretical, methodological, or empirical applications of LTS concepts and approaches; combination or comparison of LTS approaches with other theoretical frameworks; agendas for future research.
12. Steering and evaluating impact of gender equality on research and innovation (Dr. Nina Rilla, Giovanna Sanchez Nieminen, Catarina Milhazes, Sarina Gursch, Dr.Gabriela Gomes Coelho Ferreira)
Gender inequalities are still a reality in Science, Technology and Innovation (STI). The field’s persistent gender inequality and limited outlook on diversity hinders the societal impact of scientific research outputs, as these often fail to fully address the needs of different social groups. This track invites contributions engaging with contemporary changes and challenges for the incorporation of the gender and inclusiveness dimensions across the STI field. Full or early-stage research papers focusing on different levels of the research and innovation development are welcomed. The aim is to discuss the future of STI field and how gender, inclusiveness, intersectionality and social sustainability are (or not) taken into account and the consequent outcome of such practices in terms of ensuring the development of research with impact. Aspects covered by the track include (but are not limited to) the following: Methods employed for applying inclusive and intersectional knowledge in STI; specific barriers for implementation of gender and inclusiveness dimensions in STI and ideas on how to overcome them; evaluation metrices (e.g. qualitative or quantitative indicators) and tools used to assess the gender, intersectionality and/or inclusiveness dimensions in research policy and research and innovation processes; the share of methodologies and experiences by inviting scientists to present their approach and lessons learned on conducting participatory research (e.g. citizen science) with a focus on gender
Keywords: inclusiveness; diversity; gender; intersectionality; STI; sustainability; responsibility
13. Learning to transform: Connecting urban experimentation and urban policy mixes better (Marc Dijk, Anique Hommels)
The contribution of the first generation of urban living labs (ULLs) to system-wide sustainability transformations is thus far less than expected (Scholl et al 2022). A possible explanation for this can be found in the focus of most ULLs on local, highly contextualized knowledge, and a missing link to system-wide transformations through diffusion and upscaling beyond the geographic boundaries of the lab. In the transitions literature, both ‘experimentation’ as well as ‘concerted public policy mixes’ have been proposed as key instruments for transformation towards sustainability. These approaches have been studied rather separately, and a challenge for future research is how to better connect the learning processes in experiments to public policy development (Kohler et al 2019: 9). This connection seems very relevant for the speed and direction of innovations that are critical to sustainability transitions. While policy analysis can point towards ideal policy instrument mixes (cf. (Kivimaa and Kern, 2016; Rogge and Reichardt, 2016), experimental approaches should highlight the politics underlying decision and learning processes, which have a significant influence on whether new policy designs, supporting transitions better, are successfully adopted and implemented. This session welcomes contributions that explore the connection of urban experimentation and learning with the design and adaptation of urban policy (mixes), in order to accelerate sustainable urban transformation processes.
Keywords: Urban, sustainability transformation, experimentation, policy, policy mix
14. Handbook of Societal Impact of Academic Research (Magnus Gulbrandsen, Claire Donovan)
Impact is a key term in contemporary science policy. It denotes wider societal effects of (particularly university) research activities and is an important element of evaluation systems and procedures (Donovan 2011). We are editing a provisionally titled ‘Handbook of Societal Impact of Academic Research’ (Edward Elgar, 2024) which should serve as a compass for individuals and organisations interested in studying, understanding, and working with questions tied to impact. We seek contributions that summarise state-of-the-art within impact studies in a wide sense, yet want to move beyond dominant narratives of impact (economic vs. wider impacts; metrics vs. narratives) to stimulate new perspectives and critical reflections on the concept of impact. We seek submissions that address (but are not limited to): Novel theoretical perspectives on impact (this can be tied to understandings of the concept itself and to ideas like pathways, processes, systems, etc., and to policy objectives); alternative approaches to ‘measuring’ impact; multidimensional approaches to impact (e.g. that address positive and negative impact outcomes for different societal groups); transdisciplinary / Mode 2 / coproduction approaches to impact creation and assessment. The Eu-SPRI conference is the first meeting for potential Handbook authors and sessions will develop ideas and potential drafts
Keyword: research impact; research evaluation; science policy; theory; coproduction
15. Science and Technology Policy for flourishing ecosystems (Klaus Kubeczko, Nikos Kastrinos, Philine Warnke, Matthias Weber, Juergen Wengel)
The relationship between technology and values is central to current discussions on ecology and sustainability. For some, technology is a promising cure to nature’s ills. For others technology is nature’s nemesis - an excuse for not solving ecological problems through legislation and an alibi for those causing ecological destruction. Whether the values pursued by developing technology are compatible with the needs of natural ecosystems is at the core of debates between advocates of growth and de-growth. Faced with major ecological challenges we are witnessing calls for significant realignments of societal values and value-systems around the relationship between humans and nature to allow ecosystems to flourish within the planetary boundaries. Against this background, this track will seek to address the question: what are the implications of the changing ecological value systems for understandings of performance and impact in science and technology, and for science and technology policy analysis and practice? We call for papers exploring, explicating and documenting cases of science technology and innovation practice, policy and programming associated with ecological value changes. We seek contributions from foresight studies, strategic policy analysis and evaluation perspectives and from a broad spectrum of disciplines and interdisciplinary fields such as economics, sociology, ethnography and policy-studies. With this track we would like to contribute to develop exchange and engagement of researchers in the Eu-SPRI community with those addressing the relationship between society and nature, but also with policy makers involved in the debates about the role of science and technology for the future of humanity. This exchange shall help better understand the consequences for science and technology policy-making in the larger context of transformative governance.
16. Making foresight effective for next-generation STI policy: Exploration –Orientation –Participation (Matthias Weber, Kerstin Cuhls, Radu Gheorghiu, Giovanna Giuffré, Nikos Kastrinos)
In view of crises and other disruptive developments, the interest in Foresight to support STI policy has been growing in recent years. In parallel, more ambitious and more transformative contributions are expected from STI policy to help resolve emerging societal challenges. This raises governance challenges, such as a closer cooperation across policy domains and levels, or engaging stakeholders more widely. Foresight promises to help address these challenges. This widening role of Foresight requires reflecting Foresight practices in six regards: i) a tighter embedding of Foresight in policy-making processes; ii) an earlier alignment of policy directions pursued across different policy domains and levels by providing common orientations; iii) a growing attention to normative and ethical considerations; iv) a wider participation and engagement of heterogeneous groups of stakeholders in Foresight activities, increasingly also facilitated by online techniques; v) regular and iterative futures dialogues with the communities of interest; and vi) efforts to establish accountability frameworks for Foresight studies. This track brings together recent experiences with Foresight addressing one (or several) of the aforementioned changes in practices. The track will be based on paper presentations and poster sessions, and a final policy roundtable to discuss Foresight for policies with a transformational ambition.
17. Disrupting evaluation cultures (Alejandra Boni, Stephanie Daimer, Michael Dinges and Mireille Matt)
Evaluation culture refers to the consolidation of established evaluation practices, eventually leading to the institutionalisation of the evaluation function (Bustelo 2006). Such function differs across countries, stretching from bureaucratic exercises to being part of the transparent democratic process (Toulemonde 2000). When research governance involves broader stakeholder groups, the “prime goal of evaluation shifts from accountability to communication between partners – regarding goals and research design - and to mutual learning” (Spaapen 2015, Joly and Matt 2022). This shift can be made extensive to innovation policy. Transformative innovation policies (Schot and Steinmueller 2018) or Transformative Mission-Oriented Innovation Policies (Edler et al., 2021) stressing directionality and inclusiveness, call for evaluation approaches based on the same principles and emphasise the formative role of evaluation (Molas-Gallart et al. 2021, Dinges et al. 2020). These changes disrupt existing evaluation cultures. They challenge the dominance of summative approaches where the role of the evaluators is seen as that of emitting an impartial judgement on the success of an intervention. This is not, however, an easy transition, and the inevitability (Spaapen 2015) of this shift in evaluation culture should be called into question. Evaluation capabilities, organisational boundaries and institutional inertia are just two factors that may stand in the way of a shift in evaluation practices. This track will assemble experiences of approaches to research and innovation policy evaluation that challenge current practices. The papers can address, among others: The type of difficulties they have encountered in implementing new evaluation approaches (institutional inertia, preferences for existing research techniques, expectations about the results of the evaluation and their role, missing capabilities to realise policy learning etc. ); the success or failure in implementing changes in evaluation approaches and practices, and the causes of such outcomes; evaluation techniques and methods to overcome them; new capabilities and competencies required by evaluators and by those commissioning evaluation studies; the changes in the range of actors and stakeholders involved in formative evaluation activities. Next to descriptive papers, which ideally include concrete examples, we encourage more analytical or comparative papers, which help to develop our theoretical understanding of the role of evaluation in the design and implementation of impact-oriented policies.
Keywords: Evaluation culture; evaluation techniques; capabilities; competences; formative evaluation
18. Governing Research Careers: addressing persistent and emerging challenges in the context of the ‘impact agenda’ (Carolina Cañibano, Alain Mermet, Emanuela Reale)
Research careers play an important function in linking the production of knowledge with different social and institutional contexts. This linking function is highly relevant in the current policy context, characterized by high expectations regarding science’s socio-economic impact and by an ambitious policy agenda aimed at deepening and improving the functioning of the European Research Area. The purpose of this track is to bring together and promote discussion and exchange of ideas between the academic community conducting research on research careers, and the practitioner and policy making community who is now in charge of adjusting career governance to persistent and emerging challenges. We welcome research papers and expressions of interest from the policy and practitioner community on the following topics: conceptual tools for studying and governing research careers; rewarding, incentivizing and assessing research careers in the context of the ‘impact agenda’; from research careers to research professions: accommodating and governing emerging work roles and technical careers in research; working conditions, mental health and wellbeing in the research profession (including equality, diversity and inclusion dimensions); the functions of researchers’ geographical and inter-sectoral mobility; doctoral training for diversified career pathways; and independence and inter-dependencies in research careers
Keywords: conceiving research careers; observing and analysing research careers; governing research careers; research professions; research careers and scientific impact
19. Reimagining research and funding cultures in the Anthropocene (Michael J. Bernstein, Robert D. J. Smith, Thomas Franssen, Cian O’Donovan, Filippo Cuttica)
In a time of disruption and ecological crisis, governments, firms, and philanthropies reach for scientific and technological solutions. Consequently, policymakers increasingly task researchers to not only perform “excellent” research but also contribute to addressing societal, environmental, or political challenges, and cultivate research cultures that practice “science with and for society”. Yet the social and material impacts of humankind’s R&I—even if only measured by the embedded energy, labour, and natural resources they entail—advance the degradation and exploitation of Earth systems. Living in the Anthropocene invites us to examine R&I in a new way: a history of investments that hand out rights to harm people, non-human animals and ecosystems in the name of discovery, profit, or the wellbeing of a particular subset of humankind. We need new theories and methods to design research and funding cultures in ways that can address these impacts on human and more-than-human beings. In this open track, we therefore invite a reimagining of R&I cultures in the Anthropocene. Please submit based on your experiences, efforts, and ideas to design research and innovation policy or practices that engage human, ecosystem, and more-than-human impacts of R&I in new ways.
20. Facilitating, fostering, and funding transdisciplinary research (Laurens Hessels, Jochem Zuijderwijk, Anne-Floor Schölvinck, Annemarie Horn, Lotte Krabbenborg)
Interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary collaborations are increasingly embraced as promising approaches for improving the societal impact of public research and addressing complex challenges. In order to realize the potential of transdisciplinary research, research funders across Europe are experimenting with new programs, criteria and procedures. The ways in which research funders program research and evaluate proposals influences the choices researchers can make when designing transdisciplinary project proposals. In generic programs, (inter- and) transdisciplinary proposals run the risk of scoring relatively low due to reviewers’ biases. There is a need for tailored quality standards and evaluation practices, because conventional indicators are typically defined in disciplinary contexts. The aim of this track is to support this development with conceptual and empirical insights into: The role of research funding agencies in supporting (inter- and) transdisciplinary research; the translation of transformative missions and ambitions into specific research funding instruments and selection and evaluation criteria; the assessment of (inter- and) transdisciplinary research in research funding processes; approaches for programming, coordinating, monitoring and evaluating (inter- and) transdisciplinary research-To explore practical implications of the papers presented, we will set up a practitioners’ panel comprised of representatives of several European funding agencies.
Keywords: interdisciplinarity; transdisciplinarity; research funding; quality indicators; research evaluation; science policy
21. Translational Research: How far have we come to bridge the gap between science and practice? Rationales, Design, Impact and Evaluation (Effie Amanatidou, Isabel-Maria Bodas-Freitas, Anders Broström, Cinzia Dello Russo, Dimitri Gagliardi, Jarno Hoekman, Magnus Holmén, Michael Hopkins, Oscar Llopis, Bastian Rake, Ronnie Ramlogan, Taran Maru Thune, Alfredo Yegros)
“Translational Research refers to the “effective translation of the new knowledge, mechanisms, and techniques generated by advances in basic science research into new approaches for prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of disease […] essential for improving health.” (Fontanarosa & De Angelis, 2002, p. 1728). This track will gather original papers should that address the bridging of the divide among the diverse stakeholders engaged in translational processes (researchers, clinicians, regulators, industry, patients and their advocacy organisations, etc.) that may be subject to conflicting logics, epistemic cultures and intrinsic motivations. Contributions to the session should provide novel and interesting insights into initiatives aimed at reducing cognitive, organisational, institutional, and social distances among the actors involved. These considerations should inform policy development and health strategies. We are interested in areas such as: Gaps and challenges in collaborative research and medical innovation; New forms of collaboration bridging knowledge generation and knowledge application; Key conditions for bridging discoveries to practice in health; Differential diffusion of practices and access to medical innovations across disciplines, health systems and regions; Use and abuse’ of data and data analytics for bringing discoveries to practice; Changing roles of regulation and regulatory bodies in translational research; New concepts for evidence-based policy design based on TR insights; Evaluation and impact analysis of translational research”.
22. Performance evaluation of government S&T budgeting: theoretical, empirical, and methodological contributions (Xiaoxuan Li, Aruhan Bai)
Research and development (R&D) is a major driving force to innovation and further economic growth (Bilbao‐Osorio and Rodríguez‐Pose,2004), in which the government funding for R&D has been playing a critical role. (Mansfield,1984) Under the context of achieving the target of performance-based government (Broom,2006), heated discussions have been aroused around the topic of how the government should fund research in a ‘smart’ and ‘efficient’ way. This issue has shown its particular importance in this post-pandemic context where public sectors across the world are suffering from tight budgets, whilst the increasing demands from scientists and scholars in terms of finance, equipment and staff cannot be catered to. Governments across the world have examined different ways to achieve the goals of improving S&T performance within the budget constraints, i.e. Program Assessment Rating Tool (PART) in the US, which is now changed into Performance Evaluation consisting of Cross Agency Priority Goals ,Strategic Objectives and Agency Priority Goals; and Cost-Effectiveness Analysis adopted by UK, Australia, and Canada. This track, therefore, calls for paper submissions either focus on the theoretical reflections on the government S&T budgeting or sharing empirical practices from different countries or methodological contributions of how to conduct the management of government S&T budgeting and its performance evaluation. In particular, but not limited to, this track focuses on the following themes: 1. The theoretical exploration of performance evaluation of government S&T budget; 2. Case studies of the performance evaluation of government S&T budget; 3. Methodological contributions on the evaluation of S&T that are closely related to the government S&T budget management; 4. Exploring the relationship between the performance evaluation and other types of public S&T budget management and evaluation; 5. Research directly targets the issues and challenges of the performance evaluation of government S&T funding.
23. Biosocial technical systems: integrating analysis on sociotechnical systems, biosocial systems, and policy evaluation (André Sica de Campos, Janaina Pamplona, Paula Xavier dos Santos, Rebeca Buzzo, Cátia Miriam Costa)
This track integrates analysis on sociotechnical systems, biosocial systems and policy evaluation. Research on sociotechnical systems emphasizes that socially constructed technologies mould society and are moulded by societal elements. This body of knowledge has overlooked biological systems. Biosocial analysis and the social determinants of diseases observe the interplay between biological and social factors as jointly explaining the effects of diseases over human beings. Biosocial analysis has potential to push forward knowledge on how biological systems interact and align with sociotechnical systems. According to Fox, Griffy-Brown & Dabic (2020) a novel topic of research would focus on both of these elements. Biosocial technical systems have to do with how and why sociotechnical systems align with biological systems. We welcome studies that analyse how technology, responding to biological systems, are mediated by social factors such as the public acceptance of science and innovation. We also welcome contributions that add to established evaluation practices, by exploring participative and transformative approaches to innovation. Possible topics for submissions include: the role of scientific and public health infrastructures in biosocial technical analysis; evaluating the impact of biosocially shaped infrastructures and technologies; biosocial technical systems and vaccines; biosocial technical systems for biofuels, food, water and sustainability.
Keywords: sociotechnical systems; biosocial systems; policy evaluation.
24. Creative and Cultural Industries and Innovation: New models, new policies, new institutions (Josh Siepel, Hasan Bakhshi, Bruce Tether, Giorgio Fazio)
The creative and cultural industries (CCIs) play an increasingly central role in the global economy, but the evidence base around the nature of innovation in these sectors and their economic contribution and organisation is still relatively modest. There is growing evidence that the nature of innovation in the CCIs has some distinct characteristics from some other sectors (Tether 2021, Siepel et al 2022), particularly relating to the role of design in the innovation process (Tether and Yu 2022), but also that innovative CCI businesses are face particular financial constraints (Di Novo et al 2022). This session welcomes papers that address these issues, in the CCIs more broadly or in specific creative sub-sectors (e.g. film/TV, architecture, music, etc). In particular, we welcome proposals and papers relating to: Patterns of innovation in the CCIs and constituent sectors; The role of design in innovation; Structure of R&D in CCIs and constituent sectors; Finance for innovation and growth in CCIs and constituent sectors; Skills for innovation in CCIs; New business models for innovation; Creative clusters and innovation; Innovation for sustainability in CCIs; Policies to support creative industries.
25. Harnessing Social Innovation for Sustainability (Katrin Ostertag, Jakob Edler, Jürgen Howaldt, Rick Hölsgens, Matthias Weber, Doris Schartinger, Tineke Kleinhout-Vliek, Adrian Smith)
With a growing awareness of planetary boundaries and issues like climate change, epidemics, and increasing and persisting inequalities, sustainability concerns have become more and more prominent in STI policy. There is a growing conviction that, in order to master these challenges, a broader understanding of innovation is needed which includes social innovations. Generating societal impact by introducing social innovations into the framework of a comprehensive innovation policy and the associated opportunities and challenges are at the center of the proposed session track. The session offers the opportunity to discuss the future role of social innovation in STI and sustainability policies from different angles and in different (policy) fields (e.g. energy, mobility, food, circular economy, health care). Topics may include e. g. diffusion and scaling, social innovation in a postgrowth world, innovation ecosystems for social innovation, policy mixes or impact assessment of social innovation. We plan for regular full (draft) research paper sessions as well as a policy dialogue session. In addition, building on the Early Career Conference on Social Innovation in September 2022 in Dortmund, we also encourage early career researchers to send in abstracts for sessions dedicated to them (please mention “Early Career” in your abstract).
Keywords: Social innovation, energy, mobility, food, circular economy, health care, impact assessment
26. Linking TIPC with Deep Transitions Lab: Mobilising public and private funders for transformative change (Alejandra Boni, Chux Daniels, Bipashyee Ghosh, Johan Schot, Diana Velasco, Matthias Weber)
After five years of operation, the Transformative Innovation Policy Consortium (TIPC) of public partners, enters a second phase in 2023. Next to broadening the range of participating countries, it aims to strengthen the experimental element of TIPC.
While public R&I funding is an important trigger for experimenting with sustainable solutions, scaling successful experiments requires other means and instruments. For achieving transformative systems change, it is essential to mobilise private investors (e.g. institutional investors, impact investors and philanthropists) for transformative purposes.
Blending a transformative private investment perspective with transformative innovation policy is what the Deep Transitions (DT) initiative is about. It draws on the current knowledge infrastructure and aims to complement the TIPC public policy initiative by mobilizing private funders to invest in transformative endeavours. This dialogue session aims to revisit experiences with TIPC experiments and showcase some newly implemented transformative innovation experiments. Introduced through an overview presentation on TIPC/DT achievements and plans, it will illustrate a set of case examples by private investors and public funding bodies in a gallery format, and a panel discussion of practitioners to identify barriers and success factors as well as agenda items for future research on public-private transformative initiatives.
Conference Track Topics
Topic Group B: Open Track
27. Open Topics
Under the ‘Open Topics’, we invite submissions from a wider thematic sphere that do not fall under any of the Topics suggested by the Special Sessions. The organisers will create ad-hoc thematic tracks for accepted submissions in the Open Track.