Granted NWO-MVI projects 2016
Within NWO-MVI, nine new research projects, all related to the top sectors, were honored at the beginning of 2017. These projects identify early ethical and social issues of (technological) innovations, to make sure these can be taken into account in the innovation process. This increases the level of acceptance among stakeholders.
How many tasks can a self-propelled vehicle take safely from a driver? And who is responsible in case of an accident? What institutional and administrative changes are needed in the gas sector to realise a socially responsible energy system? How can you replace facts and fables by better images about technological innovations that have a great impact on public debate and policy making?
Scientists and private parties reflect upon these and other questions within the NWO research programmme on responsible innovation (NWO-MVI), which fits into the top sectoral policy of the Dutch government and the Dutch National Research Agenda. NWO granted a budget of over 6 million euros for this programme, which allows nine new scientific research projects to start. These projects connect all on topics that are relevant to specific top sectors. Other projects are inspired by subjects from the Dutch National Research Agenda, including digitisation. These projects all have a case that is relevant to several top sectors.
An international committee - consisting of researchers and social stakeholders and chaired by Professor Armin Grunwald - has honored the following research proposals, based on both scientific quality and social relevance.
Meaningful human control over automated driving systems
Prof. Bart van Arem, Delft University of Technology, 3 years
Consortium partners: Toyota Motors Europe, Royal HaskoningDHV, ANWB, Achmea, Nationale Nederlanden, AMS, SWOV, Langerak/van Roest, Connekt, TRANSDEV Nederland, Ministerie I&M, RDW, CBR
(Semi-) automotive vehicles are of great interest. According to many, it is rather a matter of how and when we will drive automatically than when. But how many tasks can a driver take over safely from a driver? And who is responsible in case of an accident? This project aims at a socially responsible transition to automotive vehicles and develops guidelines. Main focus is the development of a theory of meaningful human control of automotive vehicles.
Inclusive biobased innovation securing sustainability and supply through farmers
Dr Lotte Asveld, Delft University of Technology, 3 years
Consortium partners: DSM, BioRefineryDevelopment, GoodFuels Marine, SkyNRG, CarbonAgro, Havenbedrijf Rotterdam, Rodenburg Biopolymers, Sunchem South-Africa
Farmers and producers of other biomass (such as forests) should be involved in the value chain for biobased products. After all, they play a major part in the production process. This project focuses on the values, concerns and wishes of biomass producers. Bsed on this, a design of a sustainable biobased value chain will be made. Such a broad-based design can promote the transition to sustainable use of biomass for products such as bioplastics and biofuels.
Crowd based innovation governing transition responsibilities
Dr Eefje Cuppen, Delft University of Technology, 4 years
Consortium partners: Enexis, Waterschap de Dommel, Hoogheemraadschap Delfland, Brabant Water, EVO, TLN, Dinalog, Nelen & Schuurmans, KWR
In an increasing number of sectors, crowd-based innovations can be seen: citizens who organise collectively to deliver products or services that were previously provided by government or business. A good distribution of responsibilities in crowd-based initiatives is needed to achieve socially responsible innovations. This project aims to gain insight into the way in which crowd-based innovations (CBIs) can be organised in a responsible way. The research will provide a framework for governance of responsible CBIs and for specific governance interventions for a number of concrete CBIs.
Designing innovative and socially responsible heating systems
Prof. Paulien Herder, Delft University of Technology, 4 years
Consortium partners: BodemenergieNL, Decisio, Ecorys, Eigen Haard, Eneco, EnNatuurlijk, Inventum, Nuon, Platform Geothermie, Twynstra Gudde, Waternet, Alliander, AMS Institute, Gemeente Utrecht, Warmtestad Groningen, TU Delft
In the coming decade, far-reaching decisions must be made on systems that heat Dutch homes, offices and other buildings. This project will draw up guidelines for the design of socially responsible, sustainable heating systems that will be widely accepted.
Mobile support systems behaviour change
Prof. Anthonie Meijers, Eindhoven University of Technology, 4 years
Consortium partners: Philips Research
The rapid development of smartphones creates great opportunities to support a healthier life. This project develops ways to enable users to trust and to be willing to use health support systems without undermining the intrinsic motivation for living healthy.
Traveling facts and uncertainties
Dr Tamara Metze, Wageningen University & Research, 4 years
Consortium partners: Triquanta, Wing, RIVM
Images on facts and fables have a major influence on public debate and decision making on technological innovations. Supporters and opponents use them to win over public opinion, politicians and policy makers. But the dominanting images may not necessarily be correct. More knowledge and better communication by experts do not always help. This project develops a dashboard to develop more accurate images about technologies.
Wastewater treatment with algae
Prof. Annemarie Mol, University of Amsterdam, 3 years
Consortium partners: Waterschap Aa en Maas, Waterschap De Dommel, Brabant Water, Ecovillage Boekel
This project designs a decentralised water purification system that requires little water, removes harmful substances and recovers useful materials for reuse as fertiliser. This system is being used in Ecodorp Boekel to investigate if it works in everyday practice. In this respect, technical and socio-ethical aspects are examined and adjusted if seemed necessary.
Humanitarian logistics for refugee work
Mr dr Lamber Royakkers, Eindhoven University of Technology, 2 years
Consortium partners: Prisma, Gunilla Bradley Centre for Digital Business Sweden, ARP, NOVA Instituut, North-West University South Africa
New digital technologies offer social and economic opportunities for logistics around refugees. The researchers develop an expert system to optimise the logistics process in a socially responsible way. They also take into account ethical and social aspects as well as the interests of all stakeholders.
Responsible decision-making on gas
Prof. Linda Steg, University of Groningen, 4 years
Consortiumartners: N.V. Nederlandse Gasunie, Energie Beheer Nederland EBN B.V., Nederlandse Olie en Gas Exploratie en Productie
What institutional and administrative changes are needed in the gas sector to realise a socially responsible energy system? What factors determine the support for gas solutions that contribute to a sustainable energy transition? This project investigates how people and stakeholders judge gas, and what factors influence these judgments. Based on the results of the research, the researchers develop insights for socially responsible decision-making on gas. This could also imply that certain developments in the gas sector should be discontinued.