A Framework for Responsible Innovation

Richard Owen, Jack Stilgoe, Phil Macnaghten, Mike Gorman, Erik Fisher, David Guston

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

466 Scopus citations


"Responsible innovation," in reality, lacks definition and clarity, both in concept and practice. This chapter begins by emphasizing that science and innovation have not only produced understanding, knowledge, and value (economic, social, or otherwise), but also questions, dilemmas, and unintended impacts. It presents a framework for responsible innovation, based on four dimensions-anticipatory, reflective, deliberative, and responsive. The chapter emphasizes that this must be able to reflect on both the products and purposes of science and innovation. It reminds of the rich history in a number of fields of study, both theoretical and applied, which make a significant and important contribution both to the framing and definition of responsible innovation, and to how this is translated through the dimensions into practice. The chapter concludes with some closing thoughts on implementation, on how the embedding of responsible innovation as a genuinely transformative and constructive approach can be supported.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationResponsible Innovation
Subtitle of host publicationManaging the Responsible Emergence of Science and Innovation in Society
PublisherJohn Wiley and Sons
Number of pages24
ISBN (Print)9781119966364
StatePublished - Apr 2 2013


  • Four dimensions
  • Responsible innovation
  • Science

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)


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