Addressing climate change in Responsible Research and Innovation: Recommendations for its operationalization

Ivan Ligardo-Herrera*, Tomás Gómez-Navarro, Edurne A. Inigo, Vincent Blok

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) has only lately included environmental sustainability as a key area for the social desirability of research and innovation. That is one of the reasons why just a few RRI projects and proposals include environmental sustainability, and Climate Change (CC) in particular. CC is one of the grand challenges of our time and, thus, this paper contributes to the operationalization of CC prevention in RRI. To this end, the tools employed against CC were identified. Tools originated in corporate social responsibility and sustainable innovation which help to operationalize strategies against CC in RRI practice. Complementarily, the latest proposals by RRI projects and actors related to CC were reviewed. The findings of the document analysis and the web review were arranged in a framework intended for research and innovation that has an indirect but relevant negative impact due to CC. Thus, four main strategies for CC prevention in RRI were determined: a voluntary integration of the aims, a life cycle perspective, open access databases and key performance indicators, and stakeholder management. The article is finished acknowledging diverse barriers hindering the operationalization of CC prevention in RRI, and we introduce future avenues for research in this area.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2012
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jun 2018


  • Climate change
  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Responsible research and innovation
  • Sustainable innovation


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