RRI in the Regional R&I context

Catalonia is the second most populated and the fourth richest region of Spain. Its strategic location on the Mediterranean Sea and on the border with Europe has given its economy a strong industrial and international trade character. A strong industrial base and a powerful ICT sector are key elements making Catalonia a driving force in industry 4.0.

The current Smart Specialization  Strategy structures the region’s R&I development: it combines traditional instruments for supporting research and innovation with innovative mechanisms aimed at promoting new forms of stakeholders cooperation to co-create public policies and innovative solutions to address societal challenges. The current most important innovative methodologies are the following:

  • PECT: Innovative projects promoted by local authorities in cooperation with research and innovation players and other actors in the territory with a view to responding to challenges of a territorial nature. These PECTs are evolving towards shared R&I agendas towards sustainability and social change.
  • Shared agendas for sustainability and social change: agendas that articulate, through a participatory model of governance, the collective action of various actors aimed at addressing a common challenge (usually related to SDGs) in the territory.
  • Monitoring and evaluation systems that focus on collective learning (as well as accountability) and on impact on complex and dynamic environments.

The next Catalan S3 is under development for the programming period 2021-2027 and it aims to integrate the four dimensions RRI dimensions (Anticipation, Reflexivity, Inclusion, Responsiveness). It is inspired by the theoretical framework of transformative innovation policy, by the need for responsible research and innovation, and by the concept of shared value.


Municipal Waste Management

The participatory approach implemented

The aim of TRANSFORM is to contribute to Catalonia’s transition to a more competitive, sustainable and inclusive economic model.  The Catalan cluster is working towards transforming the projects from the triple to the quadruple helix, incorporating citizen science as a means of integrating RRI into Catalonia’s RIS3CAT 2021-2027, its instruments and the actors of the Catalan R&I ecosystem.

The pilot projects chosen by the Catalan cluster are already developing or planning to develop innovative participatory strategies. The Catalan cluster will deepen this perspective using two approaches:

    1. Co-creation process of innovative citizen science tools:  various agents of the quadruple helix will be involved in a co-creation process to generate innovative tools based on citizen science.
    2. Citizen science to improve municipal waste selective collection: a citizen science process will be developed in order to contribute to the design and monitoring of innovative municipal waste selective collection systems.

Activities and Timeline 

May – November 2020
A series of internal online meetings among Catalan cluster partners are conducted in order to understand and map RRI and S3 within the regional setting and to define pilot projects with strong potential to impact the R&I ecosystem.

June – November 2020
Four capacity building activities (webinars & workshops) are developed with local stakeholders, General Directorates and Public Agencies, with the aim of raising awareness and knowledge on RRI and citizen science within the regional research and innovation ecosystem and also foreseen collaborative propositions on how to improve the openness and inclusiveness of the regional R&I ecosystem.

From December 2020 onwards
Pilot projects on co-creation and citizen science will be defined and implemented.

Think tank

The Catalan Think Tank is currently composed of approximately 55 representatives of 3H stakeholders of the Catalan R&I ecosystem. They are divided into two different groups:

Key policy makers (12): this group constitutes the core of the Think Tank. Its contribution is in the TRANSFORM activities dealing with embedding RRI in RIS3CAT at regional level, specifically the co-creation process of impact assessment needed to evaluate the transformative impact of TRANSFORM activities.

Implementing organisations of the Catalan R&I ecosystem  (13 local governments, 15 relevant universities & research centers, and 3 key companies). This group is mainly devoted to participation in the capacity building sessions, defining collaborative propositions on how to improve the openness and inclusiveness of the regional R&I ecosystem and reflect on and learn from the pilot projects to be developed in Catalonia.


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Advisory Board member for citizen science

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EU flag This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 872687. This website reflects only the authors' view and the REA and the EC are not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.
Project Coordinator: Angela Simone Fondazione Giannino Bassetti angela.simone@fondazionebassetti.org
contact: info@transform-project.eu