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Applying an RRI Filter in Key Learning on Urban Living Labs’ Performance

Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management, Delft University of Technology, 2628 BX Delft, The Netherlands
Sustainability 2019, 11(14), 3833; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11143833
Received: 30 May 2019 / Revised: 30 June 2019 / Accepted: 5 July 2019 / Published: 13 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rethinking Filter: Responsibility and Sustainability)
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Abstract

Urban living labs is a practical methodology in improving sustainability in cities by facilitating collaborative learning and innovation in a real-life environment, thereby mainly responding to the needs of users (citizens). The paper aims to filter a list of key learnings on urban living labs through the lens of Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI). One of the motivations is that key learnings on urban living labs are mainly derived from means-goal effectiveness (MGE) thinking while the urban setting calls for a broader perspective due to complexity and tension from the multi-actor, multifunctional, and multi-scalar character of cities. The filtering reveals almost 40 learnings as ‘overlap’ and ‘exclusive for MGE’. Importantly, five learnings are identified as specific for RRI and potentially enriching living lab methodology: ethical and normative principles like health, safety, security, and equality between societal groups, and a wider distribution of benefits and risks of living lab outcomes, in particular, contradictory sustainability issues. The RRI filtering causes three practical implications: coping with uneven power distribution between stakeholders, limited feasibility of applying the comprehensive learning framework, and challenges of overarching platform structures enabling to better incorporate RRI concerns in living lab methodology. The findings as presented in an adapted list are new, as RRI values and concerns have seldom been applied to practical innovation and have never been explicitly applied to urban living labs’ performance beyond the borders of effectiveness thinking. View Full-Text
Keywords: responsible research and innovation; filtering; sustainability; urban living labs; means-goal effectiveness responsible research and innovation; filtering; sustainability; urban living labs; means-goal effectiveness
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Van Geenhuizen, M. Applying an RRI Filter in Key Learning on Urban Living Labs’ Performance. Sustainability 2019, 11, 3833.

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