Applying the Materiality Matrix for Responsible Regional Innovation

Written by Emad Yaghmaei

31 January 2023

In November, Konstantina Varlami and Emad Yaghmaei, from our partner YAGHMA, participated in the ISPIM – International Society for Professional Innovation Management conference in Athens, Greece. The conference topic focused on ‘The Role of Innovation: Past, Present, and Future’.

The conference served as an opportunity for Konstantina and Emad to present on the topic of Materiality Assessment to Mature Responsible Innovation in Regional Innovations, Piloting in four different European regions. In the presentation, they acknowledged the need to assess regional innovation strategies against Responsible Innovation priorities, so that they are able to fulfil their mandate effectively and responsibly. Responsible Innovation implementation is a journey and the Materiality Matrix is a useful tool for understanding and assessing the relative importance of specific Responsible Innovation issues (e.g. social, ethical, and governance issues).

The team from YAGHMA, has been studying the 4 EU regions that serve as the pilots for the TetRRIS project – Tampere, Finland; Karlsruhe, Germany; Cantabria, Spain; and Szeged-Timisoara, Hungary/Romania, and seeking to provide a list of material topics to facilitate the uptake and implementation of Responsible Innovation for setting better policies.

Through this journey, they applied the ‘CEN CWA 11796 Responsibility-by-design standard’ approach to developing long-term strategies (roadmaps) for innovating responsibly in the regions. This approach was used to help the regions achieve socially desired outcomes from their innovation processes and encourages their roadmaps to consider integrating technical, ethical, social, environmental, and economic aspects throughout the research, development, and design processes.

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