Recently, the notion of responsible research and innovation (RRI) has been gaining momentum in policy and practice. The main claim of RRI is that social, ethical and environmental aspects should be taken into consideration in scientific research and innovation activities. Socio-Technical Integration Research (STIR) is one of the first tools emerging from RRI research that is designed to help research, development and innovation actors practically implement key aspects of RRI in their daily work. Since its inception in 2006, results from multiple international studies have demonstrated the possibility and utility of STIR, albeit in developed countries. In 2015, a STIR pilot study was conducted in the developing region of Szeged, Hungary. Its results are similar, but far from those achieved in developed countries. In this paper we explore what, if any, role the innovation environment plays in the outcomes of the implementation of RRI practices such as STIR. We analyze STIR results and effectiveness in the wider context of the national innovation environments of Hungary and the Netherlands. Our findings suggest that the innovation environment can affect the success and effectiveness of approaches such as STIR. As a policy recommendation, we therefore recommend that RRI approaches such as STIR be adapted to the innovation environment of the country concerned.
- Innovation environment
- Responsible research and innovation
- Socio-Technical Integration
- The Netherlands