Responsible Innovation, 2015-2016

Successful companies innovate and innovation can bring a lot of good to society, but it may harm as well. The challenge is to innovate in a responsible way: beneficial both to business and society. Then many stakeholders and many aspects have to be addressed so an interdisciplinary approach is needed. In this minor we combine the unique knowledge and skills of the three universities of Leiden, Delft and Rotterdam. Each university contributes its own specific focus and expertise on Responsible Innovation. The students and teachers come from the different universities, and bring with them specific knowledge and perspectives from their universities.

The integrative focal point of this minor are the Student Project Groups (SPGs) which are mixed groups of 4-6 students coming from the three universities, tutored by academic coaches and their target stakeholder. In the SPG, the student will apply the Intervention Cycle (elaborated in chapter 2) to a real life case of innovation. At the end of each quarter, there will be a plenary seminar where the groups will present their results to fellow students, coaches and the target stakeholder. The SPGs are formed during the first integration seminar, also known as the Kick-off day of the minor. In addition to the SPGs, there are six Thematic Modules (chapter 3).

The minor is intended for students who are passionate about understanding dilemmas in responsible innovation. The minor encourages students to think about the people, planet and profit aspects of potential innovations.

The following common features describe our target group:
– Societally conscious: you have a vision to understanding dilemmas in responsible innovation;
– Entrepreneurial spirit: you are open minded with a flexible and proactive attitude;
– Value-driven: you have a wish to contribute to financial, ecological and social sustainability.
We are looking for a high diversity of interests and backgrounds, in order to have strong cross-disciplinary teams with higher and more effective innovation capacity!

Find more information here

If you have questions, please contact Phil Robichaud

Structure of the Minor

During this minor you will be introduced to the technical, managerial and socio-economic principles that govern innovation, and discuss the ethical conditions for innovating responsibly. The media present us with a variety of interesting cases, such as Bio-metric identification, Cyber Crime, Shale Gas, GMOs, Nuclear Energy, and Labour rights. The answer to such complex problems is never one-dimensional but may be at odds with the common idea that business is mainly about money making. Companies tend to produce innovation that aims to generate revenues. Governments set rules that provide limitations for the sake of safety, environment and other societal benefits. In some cases, customers favour ‘responsible’ companies over others – ‘fair trade’ or ‘eco’ claims or labels may then create a competitive advantage.

To understand and answer these questions an interdisciplinary approach is required. In this minor, unique knowledge and skills are brought together from three cooperating universities Delft, Leiden and Rotterdam. Each university brings its own specific focus and expertise to the issue of responsible innovation. The students and teachers come from the different universities, and bring with them specific knowledge and perspectives from their universities. To bring the potential for interdisciplinarity to life, participants will embark in mixed teams on a so called Student Project; diagnosing, analysing, designing and evaluating a real life responsible innovative case.

Target group

Do you want to work together with students from Delft and Rotterdam on responsible innovation issues? This minor is open to all bachelor students of TU Delft, Leiden University, and Erasmus University Rotterdam.

We aim at students who are passionate about understanding dilemmas in responsible innovation. The course encourages students to think about the people, planet and profit aspects of potential innovations. The following common features describe our target group: – Societal conscious: you have a vision to understanding dilemmas in responsible innovation; – Entrepreneurial spirit: you are open minded with a flexible and proactive attitude; – Value-driven: you have a wish to contribute to financial, ecological and social sustainability.
We are looking for a high diversity of interests and backgrounds, in order to have strong cross-disciplinary teams with higher and more effective innovation capacity!

Registration and contact details

You can register for this minor between May 1 and August 15. It is not possible to follow only one course, as the minor is a consistent package of courses designed to help you build your knowledge in a logical and connected way.

Exceptions are made for students who have to choose electives of 15 ECTS. In this case, students have to register for the individual courses – Basecamp, Camp I and Camp II (15 ECTS) which take place in the first quarter of the first semester, those Usis codes will be announced shortly.
More information on the minor and its specific courses will be available in the e-guide from May 1 onwards. If you have questions, please contact Sjoerd Louwaars at s.p.louwaars@cdh.leidenuniv.nl

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