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Title: Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) in Practice

RRI-Practice is a 3-year project under the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 research program. Its aim is to understand the barriers and drivers to the successful implementation of Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) in a collection of national contexts; to promote reflection on organizational structures and cultures of research conducting and research funding organizations; and to identify and support best practices to facilitate the uptake of RRI in organizations and research programs. The project will review RRI-related work in 22 research conducting and research funding organizations and will develop RRI Outlooks outlining RRI objectives, targets and indicators for each organization. As a partner in this project ASU’s School for the Future of Innovation in Society will conduct the U.S.-based investigations, producing a case study of RRI in the U.S. context that will be brought together for cross-national comparison and generation of best practices with other national case studies under the EU-based project. The U.S. case study will investigate and document the national RRI culture of the U.S., and focus specifically on RRI-practice at ASU’s Biodesign Institute. Read further.

Principal Investigator:       David Guston

Co-Investigators:               Tess Doezema

Partners: This project brings together 12 international partners. See here for a full list

Funding source:                  European Commission

Award duration:                   September 2016 – August 2019

Award number:                    Grant Agreement no. 709637

 

Title: True Stories Well Told: Using Narrative to Search For Harmonies Between Science and Religion.

The idea that science and religion are irreconcilable, and that conflict is a staple of modernity seems to have particular political and cultural potency in these times. Yet insistence on conflict is a disservice to science and religion both, and to society more broadly. This project asks if this mutually corrosive dynamic can be escaped by bringing into public discourse new, compelling, and true stories about harmonies between science and religion. Through a competitive fellowship and intensive training program, a writing competition, nationwide public events, an online course, and accompanying outreach activities, the project will advance the dialogue between science and religion by building a community of skilled storytellers, writing about productive interaction and synergies between science and religion, from many different perspectives. This community will produce 20 or more entirely new narratives to create a landscape of memorable stories that begins to displace the current framings of conflict, misunderstanding, and incommensurability.  The project proposes to reach and engage large and diverse audiences across the U.S., and give voice to what it strongly believes (and recent social science research has come to recognize) is a powerful human capacity to find meaning and purpose in both science and religion in navigating today’s complex and challenging world.

Principal Investigator:         Lee Gutkind

Co-Investigators:                 Daniel Sarewitz
                                                 Rae Ostman

Partners:
Hattie Fletcher Creative Nonfiction Foundation (CNF)
Issues in Science and Technology (IST)

Funding source:                   John Templeton Foundation

Award amount:                     USD 871,749

Award duration:                    September 1, 2015-August 30, 2018

Award number:                      58453

 

 

Title: The Politics of Science and Innovation Policies: A Research Workshop

The workshop will develop a research agenda for better understanding the politics of science and innovation policy (SIP) development, implementation, evolution, and assessment. Through input and deliberation by leading scholars in the politics of SIP, the project will craft a research agenda that addresses the types of questions faced by decision makers tasked with creating future SIPs and improving existing ones.

Principal Investigator:         Daniel Sarewitz

Funding source:                   National Science Foundation (NSF)

Award amount:                     USD 35,210

Award duration:                    October 1, 2015- September 30, 2016

Award number:                     1551814

 

 

Title: Increasing Learning and Efficacy about Emerging Technologies through Transmedia Engagement by the Public in Science-in-Society Activities

The project will create, deploy, and study a set of transmedia activities that involve making, digital citizen curation, and hands-on exploration of science-in-society themes around a pervasive scientific and cultural referent – in this case, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. The project will probe the hypothesis that exposing publics to opportunities for interactive, creative, and rigorous engagement within an integrated transmedia environment will foster their interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), develop their 21st century skills with digital tools, and increase their understanding, ability, and feelings of efficacy around issues in science-in-society. To accomplish this goal, we will build on prior work by the project team to create and disseminate through a network of partners three public deliverables: 1) a digital museum dedicated to exploring Frankenstein and its scientific and cultural resonances; 2) an activities kit for table-top programming called Frankenstein’s Footlocker; and 3) a series of making activities called the FrankenFactory. These three distinct yet interlocking modes of interaction provide robust opportunities for qualitative research on the potential of transmedia environments to increase the ability of publics to work individually and collectively to contend with science-in-society issues. Additional professional deliverables include: workshops and associated materials to increase practitioners’ capacity to engage multiple and diverse publics in science-in-society issues.

Principal Investigator:          Edward Finn

Co-Investigators:                   David Guston
                                                   Rae Ostman
                                                   Ruth Wylie
                                                   Steve Gano

Partners:
Juliet Burba, Kelly Finnerty, The Bakken Museum;
Judith Guston, The Rosenbach Museum

Funding source:                    
National Science Foundation (NSF) Advancing Informal Science Learning Innovations in Development program

Award amount:                     USD 1,800,204

Award duration:                    August 1, 2015 – July 31, 2019

Award number:                     1516684

 

 

Title: Workshop: Building Better Futures-Junior Scholar Support for the 2015 Annual Meeting of The Society for the Study of Nanoscience and Emerging Technologies (October 18-21, 2015)

The project will support a workshop, the seventh annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Nanoscience and Emerging Technologies (S.NET). The meeting will take place in Montréal, Québec, Canada, on 18-21 October 2015. It will be held in conjunction with the Knowledge Network on the Ethical, Environmental, Economic, Legal and Social issues regarding Nanotechnology Network. The funds will be used to enable participation of students, postdoctoral researchers, junior scholars and independent scholars who have minimal travel and lodging funds to attend, and fully participate in, the 2015 S.NET meeting in Montréal. S.NET is an international scholarly organization devoted to furthering critical and diverse analyses of techno-scientific research and development in various fields. It includes a wide range of academic and professional communities, and strives to incorporate a correspondingly broad spectrum of disciplinary perspectives and methodologies into its scholarly activities. The award will support the professional development of junior science and technology studies scholars, as well as students and researchers from underrepresented groups. More generally, it will encourage the production of scholarship of significant and practical value to multiple important societal activities, including the critical advancement of a wide range of scientific and technological inquiries, innovative approaches to product development and sustainable marketization, and, consequently, insurance of the near-term well-being and longer-term survival and enrichment of humanity.

Principal Investigator:         Michael Bennett

Co-Investigator:                    Diana Bowman

 Funding source:                   National Science Foundation (NSF)

Award amount:                     USD 24,895

Award duration:                    Sept 1, 2015- Aug 31, 2016

Award number:                     1541939

 

         

Title:  Broadening Participation in the Social Studies of Emerging Technologies

This project combines a model for broadening participation developed by a partner of the Center for Nanotechnology in Society at ASU with a signature co-curricular activity of the Center, and takes advantage of the Center’s extensive faculty and public sector network to support the aspiration of fostering a community of undergraduate-level scholars from underrepresented minority backgrounds. Specifically, this project aims to create a systematic program to broaden participation by underrepresented minorities in science, technology and society (STS) and science policy in general, and the social studies of emerging technologies like nanotechnology in particular, by reducing barriers to participation and creating environments that have positive factors that support student success.  We aim to create a cadre of students that have both the interest and the ability to continue on to graduate school in these fields. By opening doors for new types of intellectual engagement, on-going mentorship in the students’ home institution, an intensive cohort experience in Washington, DC, and helpful financial support, we intend to lower or eliminate barriers for access for underrepresented minority students.

Principal investigator:        David Guston

Partners:                                
Georgia Tech
University of Madison-Wisconsin
University of Virginia

Funding source:                   National Science Foundation (NSF)

Award amount:                     USD 237,489 (supplement)

Award duration:                    Ends 8/31/16

Award number:                     0937591

 

 

Title:  Supplement/Community-building Around Anticipation, Integration and Public Engagement at CNS-ASU

In this supplementary proposal for the Center for Nanotechnology in Society at Arizona State University (CNS-ASU), the project is proposing support for four projects, originally rooted in the CNS-ASU renewal proposal and firmly lodged in the trajectory of the Center’s activities, all of which continue to help the Center construct community around core concepts and functions.  Project one, scenario development research, includes two scenario development workshops in collaboration with nano-scale science and engineering colleagues at ASU. Project two, STIR City, takes the next step on CNS-ASU’s “socio-technical integration research” agenda by moving out of the laboratory with the STIR protocol and including investigations with public and private sector organizations regarding nano-enabled smart energy technologies. Project three, STS and Science Center Collaborations, builds on the Center’s significant partnership with the Nano-scale Informal Science Education Network to extend collaborations between science, technology and society (STS) researchers and informal science education institutions.  Project four, Center summaries for lay audiences, will produce broadly readable white papers and narratives from each of the Center’s six current research programs for circulation to policy makers and general publics.  Together, these projects will allow CNS-ASU to continue to build networks and communities around anticipation, integration, and public engagement – the core capacities of its strategic vision of anticipatory governance.

Principal investigator:         David Guston  

Partners:                                
Georgia Tech
University of Madison-Wisconsin
University of Virginia

Funding source:                   National Science Foundation (NSF)

Award amount:                     USD 250,000 (supplement)

Award duration:                    Ends 8/31/16

Award number:                     0937591

 

 

Title: Capacity Building in Computer Science as a Driver of Innovation

This study seeks to understand how local computer science research capacity is being developed in Kenya and Uganda and the role computer science plays in supporting socially and economically relevant innovation. Nairobi, Kenya and Kampala Uganda will serve as case studies, focusing on the unique and prominent computer science departments at Makerere University and University of Nairobi. Primary data collection activities include: 1) a quantitative survey of computer science researchers; 2) in-depth qualitative interviews with researchers, students, policymakers, funders, entrepreneurs and staff of nongovernmental organizations; and 3) video ethnographic observation of researchers in their everyday interactions with students, funders, community organizations and other nodes of the innovation system. The project team has extensive experience conducting research in sub-Saharan Africa and has a network of contacts in Kenya and Uganda.

Principal Investigator:        Jameson Wetmore

Co-Investigator:                   Gregg Zachary

Funding source:                   National Science Foundation (NSF)

Award amount:                     USD 248,101

Award duration:                    September 15, 2013- August 31, 2016

Award number:                     SES-1257145

 

 

Title: Adaptive Pathways to Climate Change: Livestock and Livelihoods in Gandaki River Basin

We propose to elucidate spatial and temporal dimensions of the adaptive capacity of farmers and livestock keepers vulnerable to exposure of climate and other livelihood stressors, and link this understanding to locally relevant climate adaptation portfolio in the Gandaki River Basin of the Western region of Nepal. Our vision is to build the capacity of livestock keepers to sustain their livelihoods in the face of climatic change by generating locally relevant knowledge, enhancing coping capacities, and improving the resilience of the crop-livestock systems. This collaborative project will be conducted by an interdisciplinary team of scholars and practitioners from Arizona State University and University of Hawaii in the U.S.A, a non-governmental organization in Nepal: Local Initiatives for Biodiversity Research and Development; two Nepalese government entities: Regional Directorates of the Department of Livestock Services, Western Region and the Regional Agriculture Research Station; and a university in Nepal: Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science. This research both builds on and draws from the experience of a seed grant currently underway in Nepal, and consists of three interlinked activities: a) knowledge production through shared learning; b) understanding of practices that maintain and/or enhance ecosystem resilience; and c) capacity building through co-production of knowledge. We expect this research to converge on USAID’s Feed the Future initiatives to achieve food security while improving livelihoods of farmers and livestock keepers in Nepal. Findings from this project will allow researchers, practitioners and communities to foster adaptive capacity by highlighting experience, strategic responses, and governance structure for adaptation planning.

Principal Investigator:        Netra Chhetri

Partner:                                  Local Initiatives for Biodiversity Research and Development, Nepal

Funding source:                   USAID (Via Subcontract from Colorado State University)

Award amount:                     USD 335,163

Award duration:                    July 15, 2012- September 30, 2015

Award number:                      G-9650-30

 

 

Title: Collaborative Research:  Workshop on the Anticipatory Governance of Complex Engineered Nanomaterials

The workshop will help move nanotechnology EHS research forward in order to more quickly assess the possible impacts of nanomaterials on health and the environment by characterizing the materials in question. A series of background papers will address such topics as: 1). To what extent can we identify complex engineered nanomaterials (CENMs) and their trajectories in existing nano literature, patents, and products? 2). What do we know about the materials that are being or might be used for CENMs, in terms of current and anticipated functions, characterizations, toxicological properties, and life-cycle knowledge? 3). How do current leading scientific researchers understand the medium-term future development, applications and governing issues of CENMs that constitute the primary focus of this group? 4). What do we know about the ability of current regulatory science and regulatory policy pathways (knowledge systems including standards of evidence, decision support, etc.) to manage CENMs? 5). To what extent can we anticipate current approaches to predictive toxicology for nanomaterials to apply to CENMs?

Principal Investigator:         David Guston

Funding source:                   National Science Foundation (NSF)

Award amount:                     USD 34,250

Award duration:                    July 1, 2012- June 30, 2016

Award number:                     CBET-1235693

 

 

Title: Science Advanced through Virtual Institutes (SAVI):  Virtual Institute for Responsible Innovation

“Responsible innovation” (RI) is an emerging term of art in Europe and the United States. While there are various conceptions of RI, their central tendencies: 1) recognize that research and innovation have normative dimensions that, if more frequently engaged, could yield greater benefits; 2) understand that responsibility means (in part) pursuing research and innovation in accord with the considered values of the wider community; 3) note that the research and innovation community has, historically, accommodated concerns about responsibility in human and animal research and in economically useful research; and 4) conclude that RI must be broader than “don’t mistreat your living research subjects” and “try to contribute to economic development when possible.” RI explicitly addresses connections between the considered values of the wider community and how we make policy decisions that encourage them.

The Virtual Institute for Responsible Innovation (VIRI) would yoke together RI research, training and outreach at some of the world’s leading academic centers. VIRI’s hub is the Center for Nanotechnology in Society at Arizona State University (CNS-ASU), a Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center funded by NSF to examine the societal aspects of nanotechnology. VIRI includes members from the United Kingdom (Durham, Exeter, and Sussex), the Netherlands (Maastricht), Germany (Karlsruhe), and Canada (Waterloo), as well as affiliates in the US (National Academy of Engineering; IEEE Spectrum Online) and Italy (Bassetti Foundation). Important interactions among subsets of these participants around RI already exist; VIRI would extend such collaborations and create new ones.

Principal Investigator:         David Guston  

Co-Investigator:                    Erik Fisher

Funding source:                   National Science Foundation (NSF)

Award amount:                     USD 498,452

Award duration:                    September 1, 2013- August 31, 2016

Award number:                     SES-1257246

 

 

Title: Participatory Technology Assessment of NASA’s Asteroid Initiative

This Arizona State University (ASU) led pilot project of the Expert and Citizen Assessment of Science and Technology (ECAST) network worked collaboratively with NASA to design, test, develop, implement, analyze and assess two on-site and one on-line citizen forums for collecting informed public views on NASA’s Asteroid Initiative. The on-site forums was one-day facilitated deliberations hosted in parallel in Boston and Phoenix. Each participant group were selected based on demographic criteria representative of the diversity of the host region. The on-line forum of six weeks duration involved participants who were self-selected. The public views on the Asteroid Initiative were collected from the forums and the assessment report will provide input to early stage planning of the Asteroid Initiative and other engagement activities.

Principal Investigator:           David Guston

Co-Investigators:                    Ira Bennett  
                                                    Mahmud Farooque
                                                    Darlene Cavalier

Partner:                                  David Sittenfeld, Museum of Science, Boston

Funding source:                   National Aeronautics and Space Administration, NASA

Award amount:                     USD 196,908

Award duration:                    April 1, 2014- June 30, 2015

Award number:                      NNX14AF95A

 

 

Workshop on Research Agendas in the Societal Aspects of Synthetic Biology

Synthetic biology is often defined as the design (or re-design) of biological parts, devices, and systems, toward a useful purpose. This definition is not universal, however, and because of its diverse and dynamic nature, its rapid growth, the uncertainty but high stakes of its outcomes, and the different values operative in its assessment – what we call its “politics of novelty” – we consider synthetic biology an emerging technology. Consequently, societal questions about the governance of synthetic biology, as well as questions about its ethical dimensions and visions of its desirable futures are important projects for systematic inquiry.

This proposal describes a workshop, to be held at Arizona State University (ASU) on 4-6 November 2014, to gather about 75 social scientists, humanists, scientists and engineers who are working in the area of synthetic biology and related emerging technologies. Through drafting assignments prior to the workshop, an engaging combination of plenaries, break-out activities, and ambiance at the workshop, and aggressive and varied outreach afterward, we will articulate, and disseminate community-generated ideas for research on the societal aspects of synthetic biology. The issues the workshop plans to explore include: biosafety and biosecurity, ethics, sustainability, DIY/makers, public opinion and values, research and innovations systems analysis, integration and reflexivity, anticipation and futures, informal science education, international and inter-agency collaboration, risk, and governance.

Principal Investigator:           David Guston

Co-Investigator                      Jenny Brian  

Partner:                                  Richard Murray, California Institute of Technology

Funding source:                   National Science Foundation (NSF)

Award amount:                     USD 149,924

Award duration:                    Ends 6/30/15 and final report due 9/30/15

Award number:                     1445903 (NSF)