The field of public participation is developing fast, with phenomena such as citizen science and crowdsourcing extending the resource base of research, stimulating innovation and making science more accessible to the general population.
Promoting public participation means giving more weight to citizens and civil society actors in the definition of research needs and in the implementation of research and innovation. As yet, there is limited understanding of the implications of widespread use of public participation and as a result, there is a risk that it will become a burden for research and an obstacle to bridging the gap between research and society. This volume presents the findings of a three-year international study on innovative public participation. The resulting work studies the characteristics and trends of innovative public participation through a global sample of 38 case studies. It provides theoretical generalisations on the dynamics of public participation, suggestions for an evaluation framework and clear empirical examples of how public participation works in practice. Illustrated by best practice cases, the authors identify characteristics which contribute to successful public participation.
The book is aimed primarily at scholars and practitioners of public participation, as well as research managers, policy makers and business actors interested in related issues. There is also a secondary market for students and scholars of European governance studies, sociology and political sciences.
Part I Analytical framework: how to study public engagement 1. Introduction: PE in the context of research and innovation 2. Methodology: exploring and evaluating innovative PE processes 3. Conceptual framework: PE as part of dynamic and responsible governance of R&I 4. Research questions Part II Results: learnings from innovative PE processes 5. Empirical data: what kind of cases are studied 6. What makes PE innovative 7. What is participatory performance 8. How to evaluate PE 9. Discussion: What are the benefits and limitations of PE in developing better R&I activity
"This well-researched book on European practices of public participation in science provides comprehensive overview and deep insights. It is empirically rich, theoretically innovative and offers an active lead into Responsible Research and Innovation. In short: Everything you always wanted to know about public participation in science, but were afraid to ask." — Professor Wiebe E. Bijker, Norwegian University of Science and Technology and Maastricht University, The Netherlands
"This book addresses the ways in which academic research and policy can better interact with citizens and stakeholders. By analysing an international sample of science-in-society experiments, including citizen science, deliberative panels and innovation platforms, the authors offer a lucid analysis of the trends and impacts of such activity. This book is invaluable reading for anyone interested in understanding or developing better interfaces between science and society." — Professor Markku Mattila, President of the Academy of Finland
"Public engagement with science has grown considerably in recent decades, but its significance has remained unclear. Drawing on an inventive analysis of cutting-edge data gathered from 38 European and U.S. engagement projects, this book provides a succinct yet compelling treatise on the trends and societal functions of public engagement. Moreover, the authors’ innovative model for evaluating engagement provides a much-needed framework for assessing the social and policy outcomes of public participation at the science-society interface." — Professor Richard Worthington, Pomona College, USA