The 3rd International Living knowledge conference will offer an opportunity to share and develop information on community based, participatory research and innovation. Such research is carried out in both community and academic settings, creating new types of partnerships between research and civil society. This work has developed in response to a growing demand for research from civil society organisations.
The conference will provide an opportunity to reflect on a range of experiences from across Europe and beyond in the area of citizens science and cooperative innovation. The scientific value and innovation potential of community based and participatory research will be examined alongside their usefulness to society.
The conference will focus on : • Building equitable and supportive research partnerships with civil society organisations • Developing scientists’ and policy makers’ awareness of issues of public concern and enhancing their capacity to work for and with citizens • Developing concepts and procedures for transnational community based research co-operation. • Developing strategies and tools for civil society organisations to influence Science and Technology research and policy agendas and methodologies • Supporting the development of new Science Shops and participatory research organisations
The conference will address a number of key questions : How does citizens’ research work ? What kinds of knowledge does it produce with what objectives and consequences ? How does citizens research challenge traditional scientific frameworks and techno scientific paradigms ? What new options does it open to scientists ? What does it have to offer in terms of cooperative, bottom-up forms of innovation ? What impact does this have on the production of knowledge in society ? What visions of society does this research promote ? What are the social and policy contexts necessary to promote community based research activities ? Where does Europe stand on these developments ?
The conference will reflect the work of a range of structures including : Science Shops NGOs Universities and research institutes Participatory action research centres Political bodies Social movements
These organisations offer a broader perspective on what should be included in science and research. They undertake research on a comprehensive range of topics, including : Local and global environmental issues National and international development, Voluntary action and social capital, Health and safety, Agriculture Gender Mobility, Unemployment, Poverty, Minorities rights Disability issues.
The conference will provide a forum for discussion on the current societal context in which science is created and increasingly contested. Participants will have the opportunity to reflect on the conditions for democratised research and socialised innovation.
The conference is aimed at : People already active in or interested in community based and participatory research : citizens, researchers, students, academics, civil society organisations, and policy makers.
The conference will : Build bridges, explore ideas, discuss strategies and share best practice. The conference will link community based and participatory action research networks around the world.
The 3rd international Living knowledge conference will provide a forum where information on community based research, carried out in both community and academic settings, on new forms of partnerships between research and civil society and on new modes of innovation can be shared and developed. It aims at disseminating and exchanging information on community based and participatory research, on citizens’ science and cooperative innovation. It will present the work of a whole range of structures and science-society interactions. This will include science shops, NGOs, universities and research institutions engaged with citizens, independent institutes, participatory action research centres, political bodies, and social movements – all responding to a growing demand for research coming from wider civil society. These groups undertake a comprehensive range of research topics, including research on local and global environment, health, safety, mobility, unemployment, poverty, minorities’ issues, disability, research on voluntary action and social capital, and national and international development. They offer a broader perspective on what should be included in science and research. The conference will address a number of key questions : How does citizens’ research work, what kinds of knowledge does it produce with what objectives and consequences? How does citizens’ research challenge traditional scientific frameworks and techno scientific paradigms? What new options does it open to scientists? What innovative ways does it explore (non proprietary, cooperative, bottom-up forms of innovation and production of knowledge in society)? What visions of society does this research promote? What are the social and policy contexts necessary to promote community based research activities? Where stands Europe in this development? The conference will lead to the presentation of a large variety of experiences from across Europe and beyond that will reflect the social utility and richness, the innovative power and the scientific value of these initiatives. It will discuss the current societal context in which science is increasingly contested and will reflect on the conditions for a democratised research and socialised innovation. The conference is aimed at attracting both people already active in or people interested in community based and participatory research – citizens, researchers, students, civil society organisations, administrative officers, policy makers, etc. Our intention is to build bridges between us, explore ideas, and discuss strategies in order to empower one another. The conference aims to share best practice amongst and link community based and participatory action research networks around the world.
Background to the conference
Scientific and technical knowledge – including its embedding in modern technologies – involves many substantive social, political, economic and cultural transformations. It affects fundamental social and political structures throughout a society. Technical systems are political structures in the sense that they open and constrain the life choices and social structures which a society can give itself. Technologies crystallise social relations and make them last. And yet, technology policies often escape public scrutiny. The principal scientific and technological choices are influenced by market, researchers and bureaucrats and decisions are often made outside the operational framework of our democracies. Scientific knowledge is not neutral nor are the conditions of it’s production. It is contested and negotiated knowledge that is increasingly influenced by economic factors and for which the economic and organisational resources are unequally distributed in the society. Moreover, a new form of social conflictuality centred on the questions of risk has arisen since society has been confronted with numerous unintended, the environmental and human life threatening consequences of scientific and technological innovations. However, surveys and qualitative investigations have shown that it is not that much a discredit or a fear of science which dominates in the public sphere but rather there is a growing feeling of a dysfunction in public regulation of modes of innovation and economic development in general. Today, public research policy, – if it is on a regional, national or international level, – relates techno science nearly exclusively with competitivity, business, patents and economic strength. This is seen as the main and unquestionable way to achieve wealth and, well-being in society, problem-solving and the future development of science itself. Just like health, culture, education, and well other fields that are accounted as public and collective property, research yields appear to be thus increasingly linked to the requirements of financial markets. But technologies and competitivity cannot compensate for the lack of just social and environmental policies and are not shaped to solve long lasting injustices in society. Therefore, to conceive public science policy in a solely industrial and commercial framework is unjust and incommensurate. Technoscience obliges us to question the very basis sense of science, research and innovation. The changes that research has been undergoing during the two last decades have removed it radically from its initial missions (production of knowledge, preservation of independence) without challenging its current and future mission. We are increasingly conscious that we live in a limited world, on a planet where the natural capital becomes a limiting factor. The needs of the most underprivileged, the concerns of social and environmental justice, solidarity, diversity, sustainability, human rights, alternative property schemes and the public request for knowledge to manage our world more wisely must thus be integrated with research and innovation. Taking the example of universities it is clear that the currently ongoing process of university reorganisation places increasingly emphasis on hierarchical management rather than democratic governance principles, on stronger university-industry relations rather than university-community relations, and on more practicial (business) orientated education programmes rather than on a broader societal approach to science. This development leaves few room to community and civil society orientated engagements, to debates with wider society, to reflections on the responsibility of science and on its impact on long term societal development. But to establish direct relations between universities and communities is important in order to build social capital and to open universities to society, as well on a local as on an international level. Universities could do so by opening theses, research projects and programmes to cooperations with non for profit civil society organisations, by linking these cooperations to university courses, by strengthening the open access movement of scientists, by supporting alternative innovation schemes (not only patents), etc.
What our experiences and analyses suggest is that *The former consensus for simple « progress » has been replaced by a strong societal demand for precaution and for participation in the decision making on socio-technical issues. *There is a growing awareness that scientific knowledge is crucial but has to be democratically oriented in public interest perspectives to face the challenges our societies and our planet are facing. *Our knowledge society is a shared distributed knowledge society, characterised by a process of permanent and disseminated innovation, where society as a whole becomes a productive and creative place. Not to tap into and enhance new civil-society-based knowledge dynamics would be counter-productive to Europe’s aspiration towards a socially coherent knowledge-based society (rather than to a science-based economy, or economy-based society). *Participatory research makes a participatory approach to learning as a central part of a research process. Research should not be done just to generate facts, but to develop understanding of oneself and one’s context. It should be about understanding how to learn, which allows people to become self-sufficient learners and evaluate knowledge that others generate. *Sharing of knowledge, resources and expertise between universities and organisations in the community is possible and enriches research, teaching methods and curricula in universities. It reinforces community decision-making and problem-solving capacity and enhances students’ education and employability by means of diverse opportunities to build their knowledge, expertise and work skills through hands-on research and related experience. *Numerous peer-to-peer cooperative innovation processes (Free Software, Wikipedia, Tela Botanica, farmes’ seeds movement, etc.) are the latest examples that suggest that a third sector of knowledge production and innovation (beyond the state and market sectors) has strongly emerged within civil society. This sector (CSOs, users, « Pro-Ams »…) will become a major feature of the science and technology policy landscape in the 21th century. *This third sector of knowledge production explores alternative socio-technical futures and new directions for research. It goes beyond mainstream paradigms and frames which dominate public and private research institutions (e.g. the dogma of the harmlessness of low dose radiation, the reductionistic and productivist paradigm of agronomic research, genetic reductionism, patents as necessary incentives for innovation, etc). These forms of knowledge sometimes also differ from the classical scientific knowledge by their local character and relevance. They are built by and for concerned local groups (e.g. patients, peasants, local communities, users). *The third sector of knowledge production creates knowledge according to a participatory mode where the division between experts and « laymen » (users of knowledge) leaves the place to a culture of collective intelligence, to dynamics of creative communities, to attention paid to differentiated demands and a relation of dialogue and co-production of knowledge. However, many civil society organisations are still relatively uninvolved in research policy issues, even though they may spend a lot of their time addressing issues that are the result of research decisions made 20 years ago. We suggest that it is time for CSOs to move upstream and engage in dialogue with scientists and science policy decision makers. On the other hand, many scientists fearing the « unscientificness » of the outer world still hesitate to engage with civil society and citizens. But our knowledge-society needs the involvement and interest of CSOs in research and innovation and it needs researchers willing to work with them. This will further enrich research, broaden science’s societal legitimacy, diversify socio-technical options according to specific contexts, increase environmental, social and economic well-being, democratise innovation and strengthen our democracy.
In knowledge-society Europe, citizenship is not just access to knowledge (as the science communication approach, which empowers the citizen only as a user of scientific knowledge) ; it also implies access to techno-scientific decision making processes and being empowered as a producer of knowledge. Since citizens come from the « other side » of the problems, and since they have different preoccupations from researchers, they are able to approach and to contextualise the problems in other way, they propose other normes of judgement, they want to know other things and they utilise another range of data. Since the consequences of research activities have such an important impact on daily life and on our democratic structures, science and research should be as much considered from the citizens’ perspective as from that of the scientific establishment, the industry or governmental bodies. The conference organisers wish to underline that a science for all must be built with all and include the dialogue with knowledge formerly devalued (such as that of patients, peasants, associations, laymen, indigenous peoples, etc). Furthermore, the diversity of approaches in different countries is considerable, yet there has been relatively little information sharing and cross-national learning between countries, universities, public administrations, policy-makers, grass-roots associations and science shops. Consequently the conference will focus on : => Empowering of people and promoting of active citizenship => Building equitable and supportive research partnerships with civil society organisations => Developing concepts and tools for civil society research in order to contribute to the development of the research agendas and research methodologies at public research institutions like universities or research organisations => Enhancing scientists’ and researchers’ capacity to work for and with citizens => Facilitating transnational community based research themes by developing concepts and procedures for transnational community based research co-operation => Developing strategies and concepts to help civil society organisations and needs to influence Science & Technology policy agendas => Gaining support for new modes of innovation to be designed and implemented and to legitimate them =>Developing scientists’ and policy makers’ awareness of public concern issues => Supporting the development of new science shops and participatory research organisations
Please find here the final programme with 18 sessions, nearly 100 oral presentations, more than 30 posters, 2 videos, and Open space workshops.
Participants will receive a printed version of the programme when arriving at the conference. We apologise for eventual errors (that can always be changed in the programme at the website but not anymore in the printed version).
Final programme LK3
We have a large variety of different key note speakers coming from academia, NGOs, policy and administration from all over the world.
Isabelle Stengers, philosopher, Free University Brussels, Belgium
Mark Lipinski, vice-president in charge of research, higher education and innovation, regional government Ile-de-France, France
Helen Wallace, executive director, GeneWatch, UK
Hamed El Mously, INES (International Network of Engineers and Scientists for global responsibility), Egypt
Nicole Dewandre, European Commission, Unit Science in Society, head of Sustainable development
Budd Hall, pioneer of participatory action research, Office of Community Based Research, University of Victoria, Canada
Rajesh Tandon, president of Participatory Action Research in Asia, India
Monica Menapace European Commission, Unit Science in Society, resp. for science shops (pre-conference)
Dominique Pestre historian of science, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, France
The international organising committee includes researchers and administrators of science shops, of Fondation Sciences Citoyennes, of INES and of divers universities coming from different European countries (Netherlands, Romania, France, Denmark, Belgium, Germany, Northern Ireland), from the USA, Canada and South Africa.
Caspar de Bok, Leader of International Science Shop Network ; Internationalization Consultant at Academic Affairs Office of Utrecht University, Netherlands
Tom Borsen Hansen, INES Executive Board member ; Lecturer at Center for the Philosophy of Nature and Science Studies at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark
Camelia Draghici, Science shop Brasov, Intermediu Center, Transilvania University, Romania
Jean-Pierre de Greve, Professor at Physics Department, Free University of Brussels, Belgium
Thomas auf der Heyde, Director of Research, Technikon Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
Eileen Martin, Co-director of Science shop, Queens University, Belfast, Northern Ireland
Emma McKenna, Co-director of Science shop, Queens University, Belfast, Northern Ireland
Claudia Neubauer, Director of Fondation Sciences Citoyennes, Paris, France
Phil Nyden, Professor of Sociology and Director of the Center for Urban Research and Learning (CURL) at Loyola University of Chicago, USA
Khan Rahi, Canadian Community-Based Research Network, Toronto, Canada
Norbert Steinhaus, Director of Science Shop Bonn (WiLa), Germany
The Programme Committee incorporates all members of the organising committee and some additional members. There are especially some more members from France in order to guarantee locally the good implementation of the conference.The programme committee is the main responsible for the programme, selection of abstracts and organisation of the parallel sessions. Project teams will be created for each of the five themes of the conference. Every abstract will be read by at least three people.
Nicolas Bienvenu, Centre de Sociologie de l’Innovation, Ecole des Mines, France
Pierre-Benoit Joly, Sociologue, TSV-INRA, France
Christophe Bonneuil, Historian of science at Centre Koyre, CNRS, France
Sophie Tocreau, Ministry of Research, Mission « Science and societ »
Herve Le Crosnier, Senior lecturer at University of Caen, France
Catherine Bourgain, Geneticist, INSERM, France
Gustav Massiah, President of CRID (French Centre for Research and Information on Development)
During the conference we will discuss five main conference themes divided into numerous sub-themes.
1. University engagement with communities
The role of universities today ; How to embed community based research in universities (methods, strategies ; research projects, students education) ; Community Based Research and changes in higher education ; Strategic discussion on science shops and university engagement ; How academic education can support becoming a citizen scientist ; Methods for rewarding academic researchers who are involved in Community Based Research ; PICRIs1 – the French example of university-community research alliances ; The dichotomy between technology and knowledge transfer to industry and to communities
2. Citizen' science and social movements
Access of citizens to knowledge production and use (social forums, farmers movements, women movements, etc.) ; What does ‘citizen science’ and ‘participatory action research’ mean today? ; Popular epidemiology and risk communication ; Social movements as part of the knowledge production system ; Democracy and technological change (role of technology in creating and perpetuating power relations) ; Vulnerable populations, orphan research domains and the scientific community ; Towards pluralist expertise ; The responsibility of scientists
3. Research policy from local to global: towards science in society
Scientific policy : new actors, new experiences, new methods ; Ways of building and strengthening relationships between Community ; Based Research practitioners and local policy makers ; How to develop the relationships between Science Shops and the EC ; How to influence the policy context for CBR and Science Shop work at local, regional and international levels ; Ways of influencing research agendas at a European level to meet the needs of Community Based Research and CSO’s ; Which role for citizens in the definition of research policies? The stakes of the European Framework Programme 7 ; Recent reports on the issue of governance of science (European and national levels) ; To negotiate nanotechnologies in Europe – participatory experiences and political recommendations
4. Innovation and citizens - added values for communities
Cooperative productions and the role of citizens in the production of knowledge (free software movement, patients’ organisations, farmers’ seeds movement, Wikipedia, etc.) ; Innovation, intellectual property rights and public good ; Now modes of innovation and peer-to-peer production ; Pluralism and reversibility in innovation policies ; Sustainable development
5. Participatory processes in science and technology
Critical analyses of participatory methods : consensus conferences, citizens juries, scenario-workshops : what good practices, what links to political decisions, what limites and obstacles? ; Experiences of public debates on techno-scientific choices ; Deliberative democracy and scientific stakes
We are five partners who are co-organising the conference. You will find here short descriptions of our organisations and the links to our websites: International Science Shops Network, Fondation Sciences Citoyennes, International Network of Engineers and Scientists for global responsibility, Centre de Sociologie de l’Innovation, Unité Transformations Sociales et Politiques liées au Vivant
International Science Shop Network
Science Shops are small entities that carry out scientific research in a wide range of disciplines – usually free of charge and – on behalf of citizens and local civil society. The fact that Science shops respond to civil society’s needs for expertise and knowledge is a key element that distinguish them from other knowledge transfer mechanisms. Science Shops define themselves as ‘a unit that provides independent, participatory research support in response to concerns experienced by civil society’. For the most part, these units belong to universities, though some are organised as separate NGOs or non-for-profit companies. Science Shops combine research (and teaching where applicable) with service to society. Civil society organisations can simply approach a Science Shop with a problem in which they feel some research would be helpful for them to help solve their problem. The Science Shop staff will then transfer these requests into research projects and find students and/or staff to work on these projects, in close contact with the « client ». The results are handed over to the client and the Science Shop staff will support the use of these scientific results by the client and will help to formulate follow-up proposals, both those relevant to the client and those relevant to further research. This process means that new knowledge is generated, or at least existing knowledge is combined and adapted to context. Science Shops use the term « science » in its broadest sense, incorporating social and human sciences, as well as natural, physical, engineering and technological sciences. The word « provide » in the definition means that Science Shops make their services available on an affordable basis, free of financial barriers. Furthermore, Science Shops seek to create equitable and supportive partnerships with civil society organisations. As a mission statement, Science Shops seek to : i.provide civil society with knowledge and skills through research and education ; ii.provide their services on an affordable basis ; iii.promote and support public access to, and public influence on, science and technology ; iv.create equitable and supportive partnerships with civil society organizations ; v.enhance understanding among policymakers and education and research institutions of the research and education needs of civil society ; vi.enhance the transferable skills and knowledge of students, community representatives and researchers. A variety of other tasks are sometimes performed by Science Shops, such as regular university teaching and research, contract research, education and trainings for civil society, et cetera. Living Knowledge is the international network of science shops and comparable organisations. It is a meeting place for all organisations and persons interested in community based research and science and society relations. Living Knowledge offers a forum for the exchange of information, expertise and ideas. http://www.livingknowledge.org
Fondation Sciences Citoyennes
Founded in 2002, Fondation Sciences Citoyennes is a Paris-based think tank on the democratisation of research, science, technology and innovation. It aims at redistributing research and expertise capacities to social and citizens’ movements. Sciences Citoyennes organises and participates to public debates and conferences, publishes background papers on actual issues of « science in society », analyses critically research policy from local to international level. It works with organisations from civil society, researchers and public research institutions, policy makers and administrators, especially from the European Commission. Sciences Citoyennes works closely with the four other co-organisors. The Citizen’s Science Foundation aims at supporting and prolonging the current movement of democratic and civil appropriation of science in order to put it at the service of the common good. Its objectives are, in particular : => To increase the capacity for research and expertise of civil society, NGOs, consumerists, citizen-movements and trade unions. Sciences Citoyennes supports the establishment of a « scientific third sector » that is able to meet the growing social and ecological demands, which are sometimes neglected by the major scientific orientations. => To stimulate the freedom of expression and debate in the scientific world, to support whistle blowers and the development of public controversies and « hybrid forums » on key scientific issues. In total contrast with the fear of public intervention and with technocratic thinking, pluralism and controversy are the source not only of a better exploration of possible worlds and, therefore, of better decisions, but also of an active appropriation of scientific knowledge by the public. => To promote the democratic elaboration of scientific and technical choices. Sciences Citoyennes supports the organisation of public debates on public policies regarding research, technology and expertise. It is analysing the new methods of deliberation that have increased in number during recent years in order to support those that further a genuine technical democracy. http://www.sciencescitoyennes.org/
International Network of Engineers and Scientists for Global Responsibility (INES)
The International Network of Engineers and Scientists for Global Responsibility (INES) is an independent non-profit-organization concerned about the impact of science and technology on society. INES was founded in 1991. INES`efforts focus on disarmament and international peace, ethics, justice and sustainable development. INES is affiliated with the United Nations an with UNESCO as a NON-Governmental Organization (NGO). In 13 years, INES has become a network of over 90 member organizations and individual members in 40 countries. INES works on different projects (protection of ethical engagement – whistleblowers, ethical responsibility of scientists and enterprises ; non-proliferation and disarmament of all kinds of weapons of mass destruction and relevant delivery systems ; etc.), organises international conferences, supports and launches international campaigns. Extract from the INES Founding Statement, Berlin 1991 « Large stocks of weapons for mass destruction, overexploitation of common limited resources, and an unbalanced world economy provide fundamental challenges to human civilization an may even threaten its further existence…. Gross inequalities and injustice between and within industrialized and developing countries undermine economic, social and environmental security… Engineers and scientists play a key role, both in the processes that threaten international security and those that provide hope for the future…. It is now time to establish a multidisciplinary international network of engineers and scientists to promote the following aims : to encourage and facilitate international communication among engineers and scientists seeking to promote international peace and security, justice and sustainable development and working for a responsible use of science and technology. This includes : to work for the reduction of military spending and for the transfer of resources to the satisfaction of basic needs, to promote environmentally sound technologies while taking long-term effects into account, to enhance the awareness of ethical principles among engineers and scientists and to support those who have been victimized for acting upon such principles. » http://www.inesglobal.com/
The Centre for the Sociology of Innovation
The Centre for the Sociology of Innovation was founded in 1967 and has a staff of 30 persons. Its task is to study scientific, technical and cultural innovation while striking a cautious but fruitful balance between scientific research work, teaching and expert assessments. Combining the social and technical aspects of research projects The CSI closely monitors the content of the projects and activities it surveys, conducting detailed analysis of its productions. With the sociology of science, law and culture as its cornerstone, research focuses on the dynamics of research in industry, the anthropology of research centres, a social and technical analysis of innovation and scientometrics. Research themes have evolved and since the 1980s have centred on relatively autonomous topics : evaluation of research and innovation policies (in the public and private sectors and in associations) ; the anthropology of science and technology ; a socio-economic study of the patterns of development of various sections of the public, markets and uses (according to various fields : cultural assets, products and services). Current scientific axes The CSI’s research interests have gradually developed to take account of the consequences of its approach to traditional issues in the social sciences such as the definition of actors and action, the production of political wills, the forging of subjectivities, and the formation of communities and identities. Research on technical and economic networks has been conducted for several years with the aim of assessing their dynamics more clearly in order to move on from mere evaluation towards forecasting : emphasis has been placed on methods of reciprocal definition of the actors and their relationships, the analysis of coordination mechanisms brought into play (between laboratories, SMEs, major groups and politicians), and the theoretical implications which this networking process has for the means and justification of public action and for the practical redefinition of political instruments that promote innovation. This field of health was chosen on account of the important part played by the user, both as a patient and as an increasingly active player in health policy and the definition of sickness, and the importance of technical skills and equipment. On the basis of studies aimed at drawing the attention of non-specialists to scientific issues and the contribution which the layman can make to technological controversies, particularly in the fields of the environment marked by the appearance of the notion of risk, the task at hand is to raise, once again, the traditional question of technical democracy and, more particularly, to tackle, with the experience of the sociology of technology, the issues, frequently debated in political science, of institutional innovations and forms of public debate. Research focuses on « hybrid forums » and the environment ; and on « nature policies ». http://www.ensmp.fr/Eng/CSI/
Social and Political Transformations related to Life Sciences and Life Forms
The « Social and Political Transformations related to Life Sciences and Life Forms » (TSV) research Unit was created within the National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA) in January 2003. It brings together about 15 members (researchers, post-docs and PhD students) from different disciplines : sociology, history and philosophy. The main aim of TSV is to analyse changes in the regimes of production of knowledge in the life sciences and related transformations in forms of government as well as in market mechanisms. The TSV research Unit is an associated laboratory of the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS). It is a member of the European Network of Excellence PRIME and of the Paris Federation on Research, Innovation and Society (IFRIS). http://www.ivry.inra.fr/tsv/#version-anglaise