ORBIT is the Observatory for responsible Research and Innovation in ICT. The aim of the project is to build a community around Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI). In order to do so, the project provides a range of services including training, collaboration and consultancy services designed to prepare ICT researchers to engage with the principles of responsible research and innovation. These services, which have been available for the academic community, have now been redesigned to tailor the specific RRI-needs of industries and businesses.
This brief introduction to the principles of RRI consists of three short training presentations that can be viewed online, followed by a short test. It also suggests some links for further reading. A quiz at the end of the session tests users’ RRI awareness and issues a certificate for 70% correct answers.
Foundations in RRI
This one-day course is delivered onsite. It covers the foundational elements of RRI including an introduction to the AREA Framework. It is tailored to the specific research interests of the group. Participants can suggest topics ahead of the workshop and will have the opportunity to discuss the applicability of RRI principles to their areas of interest.
The RRI Practitioner course is a three-day course. This course is aimed at researchers who are involved in small-to-medium sized ICT projects. The course will familiarise participants with the foundational principles of RRI and provide detailed analysis of the AREA (Anticipate, Reflect, Engage, Act) Framework and introduce them to the ORBIT Method for RRI.
The four-day ORBIT Expert course incorporates the three-day Practitioner course with an additional one day that look further at the AREA-4P framework and the full ORBIT Method. This will give participants the RRI knowledge with which to undertake and manage the RRI elements of large and complex ICT projects.
Data Protection and Management
This training covers data management and data protection policies such as GDPR and the Data Protection Act 2018 to make sure that the project complies with those.
This training analyses the research processes, which includes the treatment of humans as a source of data but also the legal compliance of the research (e.g. GDPR, animal protection).
This training refers to the conduct of the researchers and includes issues as authorship, intellectual property, plagiarism, correctness, fabrication, negligence, Conduct of research, governance, compliance and reputation.
Equality and Diversity
This training covers issues of gender equality to ensure equal rights and diversity within a team.
Ethics / RRI development support
This service is intended for companies bidding for UK and EU funding. Through this service ORBIT will work with the organization in order to support the development of a bid that includes the principles of ethics and RRI specific to the needs of the proposal. As awareness of the critical role can that ethics and RRI play in enhancing the impact of research, their inclusion in proposals makes the bid more attractive and might increase its likelihood of it to be funded.
Ethics / RRI review
This service is intended for companies bidding for UK research councils and EU funding. This service aims at ensuring that ethics and RRI are incorporated at an appropriate level within the bid, and that they are likely to be acceptable to the funding body. Following the ethics and RRI principles within a bid can significantly enhance its prospect of successfully accessing funding as policymakers and funders increasingly align themselves with both principles.
The ORBIT team is happy to offer its expertise to help companies and industries comply with particular issues related to research ethics. This service includes an onsite visit, during which a member of the ORBIT team will work with the participants with the aim of getting a deeper understanding of the origin of the ethics issue and to create an action plan to comply with it.
Contribution to Advisory or Supervisory Bodies
Advisory Boards are key in the management of an organization or a corporation. The presence of a strategic advisory board can in fact provide valuable advice and guidance. ORBIT offers a series of activities to make the most out of such a body and to use its members to help the organization to address some RRI and ethics related issues. Through this service, ORBIT will collaborate in close contact with the team’s members to understand the needs of the organization and to select the most appropriate activities to carry with the advisory board.
Research ethics is becoming more relevant in ICT. This is especially true when collecting and dealing with personal and sensitive data. Albeit ethics approval is not always compulsory in ICT, a good ethical compliance can help preventing issues with data management, research integrity and disciplinary issues that can compromise the result of a research and the reputation of an organization. To this end, ORBIT offers services to help companies developing action plans for ethics compliance. The content of this service will be customised to the organization’s needs.
The strategic development of a company or business should include some elements of RRI and ethics. To help with this, ORBIT offers services particularly aiming at:
Development of codes of conduct
Organisational forecasting and roadmapping
Development of ethics review structures
These activities can be customised based on the needs of the organisation.