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Energies 2016, 9(3), 125; doi:10.3390/en9030125

Public Engagement in Energy Research

Science & Society Group, Energy and Sustainability Research Institute Groningen, University of Groningen, Nijenborgh 4, 9747 AG Groningen, The Netherlands
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Academic Editor: Erik Gawel
Received: 30 November 2015 / Revised: 20 January 2016 / Accepted: 4 February 2016 / Published: 24 February 2016
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Abstract

Public Engagement in Research is a key element in “Responsible Research and Innovation”; a cross-cutting issue in current European research funding. Public engagement can advance energy R&D, by delivering results that are more in-line with society’s views and demands; and collaboration also unlocks societal skills and knowledge. This paper structures the ways to look at engagement, and gives some pointers on how to implement it in energy R&D, with various levels of intensity. The publics to engage with can be citizens, future users, affected persons, but also organisations that represent them. We have selected methods and tools that showcase a broad range of types of engagement that have been applied in The Netherlands or the UK. The cases are grouped based on the role of the researcher in the engagement process. These roles relate to discussing with, consulting, involving, collaborating with and supporting the various publics. This study shows that there is a diversity of tools and methods already available—open to variation, combinations and further development- that facilitate the participation of society in energy research. Not only for democratic reasons, but also for instrumental benefits in creating innovations to help solve the Grand Societal Challenge of the energy transition. View Full-Text
Keywords: energy research and development; public engagement in research; responsible research & innovation (RRI); corporate social responsibility; Horizon 2020; science shops; citizen science; energy transition energy research and development; public engagement in research; responsible research & innovation (RRI); corporate social responsibility; Horizon 2020; science shops; citizen science; energy transition
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Jellema, J.; Mulder, H.A.J. Public Engagement in Energy Research. Energies 2016, 9, 125.

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