Responsible mission governance: An integrative framework and research agenda

Martijn Wiarda*, Matthijs J. Janssen, Tom B.J. Coenen, Neelke Doorn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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Governance lies at the heart of instigating, steering, and creating the conditions for mission-oriented transitions that potentially help resolve some of our grand societal challenges. In doing so, policymakers will need to navigate both epistemic and normative considerations to develop, implement, and evaluate missions responsibly. A number of scholars have therefore expressed the need for a better conceptualization of responsible mission governance as a procedural approach, particularly with the aim of coping with the complexity, uncertainty, and contestation that render these wicked problems intractable. In this paper we develop an integrative framework for responsible mission governance by taking wickedness dimensions as our entry point. Accordingly, we argue that responsible mission governance should integrate various complementary governance responsibilities (e.g., reflexivity) and modes (e.g., reflexive governance) that potentially improve the effectiveness and desirability of missions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100820
JournalEnvironmental Innovation and Societal Transitions
Publication statusPublished - 2024


  • Innovation policy
  • Mission
  • Responsible innovation
  • Societal challenge
  • Transformation
  • Transition


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