Difference Between Open Science and Responsible Research & Innovation (RRI)

Responsible Research Innovation (RRI, or put another way “research or innovation processes that take on responsibility”) is a term that has been used by the European Commission for about a decade. It defines an approach for dealing with societal challenges such as securing world nutrition, for example.

RRI and Open Science both share the fundamental values of openness, inclusion and democracy. Whereas Open Science is understood primarily as making scientific results and the associated data and methods accessible for all levels of society, RRI is defined more comprehensively. Topics such as ethics, gender, public engagement and science education play an important role here too. RRI focuses above all on a “responsible process” and the inclusion of all stakeholders affected from the fields of science, politics, industry and civic society. According to RRI, a research or innovation process that assumes responsibility is diverse and inclusive as well as open and transparent.

RRI is also closely linked to Open Science. Furthermore an RRI process is anticipative and reflexive, meaning that attempts are made to predict potential (negative) consequences and to reflect continually on the effects of one’s own actions. Further important features of a process compliant with RRI are the ability to react and adapt in order to react to the results gleaned during the process and to be able to adapt one’s own actions if necessary.

You can find information about RRI on the website of the RRI toolkit.