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Societal engagement with Key Enabling Technologies (SocKETs)

A co-creation method to align the development of innovations based on KETs with societal values and needs.

Key enabling technologies – KETs – are knowledge and capital-intensive technologies, pervasive and with a systemic relevance for all industrial and economic sectors. They are expected to have an impact on high quality jobs creation, life quality improvement and sustainable development. KETs have the potential to transform existing modes of production, and thus change relationships along the whole value chain of product development, between manufacturers, suppliers, businesses, users, policy makers, and citizens.   

The SocKETs project develops and uses co-creation, as a form of collaborative innovation to develop shared new values, to shape KETs-based innovation towards the needs of all stakeholders and for the benefits of society. 

Our three goals are:

  1. Aligning the development of KETs-based innovations with societal values and needs.
  2. Facilitating co-creation amongst industry representatives, researchers, authorities and policy makers, end-users, civil society representatives and citizens.
  3. Developing innovative ideas for KETs-based innovation.

Develop and experiment co-creation methods and tools. Conduct six test cases across Europe on industrial automation, circular economy and e-health. Create an online toolbox that can help make technology development more inclusive regarding societal needs. Design living exhibitions based on a two-way dialogue with citizens. Propose innovation strategies and design solutions.

Athena’s role
Athena conducts the preparatory research activities for creating an overview of the innovation ecosystems of the case studies areas. It analyses the cultural conditions shaping co-creation and public engagement in KETs industry contexts. It monitors the case-studies/co-creation experiments with a reflexive evaluation process that enables both learning and assessment. All-in-all, Athena is responsible for paving the way and providing all relevant prior knowledge needed to design and execute the engagement experiments.

Engage with the SocKETs project via the online exhibition Let’s Tech Together. You can browse through fun facts about key enabling technologies, learn about interesting outcomes, play a game – and more. Scroll from the purple toolbar below the page.

Developing a new technology, and looking for guidance on how to engage citizens to develop responsible innovations? Check out SocKETs Tech Industry’s guide towards responsible tech innovation using societal engagement.

See video testimonials from our international project Lab participants.

Mapping the cultural conditions for effective citizen engagement

The culturally embedded tendancies the European countries Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, Italy, Serbia and Spain are very different. Understanding these differences improves the quality of engagement with citizens in discussions about Key Enabling Technologies. Find out more about the cultural conditions necessary to ensure inclusive engagement here.

Project details