Ethics

Ethical frameworks for research activities anticipate future controversies and support debates and discussions around the future we want

ethics

Science is not neutral. It can have both positive and negative consequences. Scientists increasingly have to face the ethical dilemma of the consequences of their research. And, thus, their responsibility in science governance.

In these processes, it is important to reflect on the ideas and concerns about R&I, to deliberate about moral issues and to align research policy and research activities with social values.

These deliberations need to include a diversity of actors and stakeholder groups and make sure that shared values and ethical demands of society are met. It is not enough to punctually involve societal stakeholders at late stages, but to continuously involve stakeholders in the research process.

It is important to empower society to take part in the discussions, by providing tools and training for critical thinking and the understanding of different risks and benefits, for example.

Related deliberations about the scientific processes and outcomes become key requirements for individual researchers and institutions.

The idea behind RRI is that societal actors and innovators become mutually responsive to each other (Von Schomberg, 2012), thereby co-creating solutions for which they share responsibility.

Research integrity and researcher’s ethos also needs to be part of the education of researchers. To fulfil the goals of RRI, ethical deliberations need to take place continuously, as a responsibility of all involved stakeholders.

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