The Proso Support Tool offers information and inspiration to develop policies and practices that encourage the engagement of citizens and third sector actors in publicly-funded research and in research and innovation policy in the European Union. In that sense it is a support tool for putting Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) into practice.
Its main target groups are policy makers and governmental agencies, research funding organizations and research councils, research organizations, other engagement performing organizations, and third sector actors at national and European Union levels. These actors can make valuable contributions to promoting societal engagement in research and innovation.
Each attempt at initiating, organizing or promoting societal engagement occurs in a unique context. This includes a complex web of factors that can prevent, hamper or enable engagement. Also, what makes engagement a success varies, depending on the specific rationales and goals of engagement in a given case and context.
PROSO has found a number of factors that can negatively affect the willingness of citizens and third sector actors to get involved with societal engagement in research and in research and innovation policy. We refer to these factors as barriers to societal engagement. We have identified six key barriers: lack of relevance; lack of impact; lack of trust and critical views of others; lack of knowledge and skills; lack of time and finances; and lack of legitimacy.