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Message posted on 01/07/2020

Announcement PhD course on Philosophy of Responsible Innovation, January 13-21 2021 Wageningen/Delft (The Netherlands)

I am terribly sorry but I forgot to add some crucial information about registration. See below correct version

Dear colleagues,
May I ask you to forward this announcement of the new edition of the PhD course on Philosophy of Responsible Innovation, January 13-21 2021 in Wageningen and Delft (The Netherlands) to Research Master and PhD students who might be interested in this topic. Thanks in advance

Vincent Blok (
Philosophy of Technology and Responsible Innovation, Wageningen University

“Philosophy of Responsible Innovation” (2021) – OZSW + 4TU course

Organizating University
Wageningen University – Vincent Blok (
Delft University of Technology – Ibo van de Poel (

About the topic
This course discusses the main philosophical issues in relation to Responsible Innovation, an emerging concept in the EU context which highlights the relevance of social-ethical issues in research and innovation practices. This emerging concept calls for philosophical reflection on the nature, scope and applicability of responsibility and innovation in innovation practices in general, and the way social-ethical issues can be applied and addressed in specific fields like business, healthcare and energy in particular. Topics that will be covered include the nature of responsibility in responsible innovation, the role of societal values in innovation and value sensitive design, philosophical reflections on the role of knowledge and risk in innovation, constructive technology assessment and governance of responsible innovation, Responsible Innovation in the public sector (healthcare), responsible innovation in the private sector.
Students get to know some of the main positions in relation to philosophical issues in responsible innovation, the main arguments in the relevant debates and insight in the dilemma’s which appear in the practical application of responsible innovation in the public and private sector. Although the focus is on the philosophical and ethical issues raised by responsible innovation, we will also touch upon some more fundamental philosophical issues raised by responsible innovation. This includes issues like:

The nature of responsibility in light of the unpredictability of the future impact of innovations
The philosophical assumptions of the innovation paradigm
The way (responsible) innovations affect experience and praxis
Value incommensurability, value pluralism and the trade-offs between values in responsible innovation

Aim / objective
To become acquainted with the main philosophical issues in relation to Responsible Innovation.

Target group
PhD students (alfa, gamma, beta) who start their research in the field of Responsible Research and Innovation, and PhD students in philosophy who want to learn more about philosophical and ethical reflection in the field of science and technology development. Students from universities outside The Netherlands are encouraged to subscribe for the course as well.

Week 1 (Delft)

Day 1 (13 January 2021): Introduction to Responsible Research and Innovation (Swierstra & Boenink)
Day 2 (14 January 2021): Value Sensitive Design (vd Hoven & vd Poel)
Event lecture: Rene von Schomberg on RRI in the European Policy Context
Day 3 (15 January 2021): Conceptions of Responsibility in Relation to RRI I (Zwart) & Philosophy of Innovation (Blok)

Week 2 (Wageningen)

Day 4 (18 January 2021): AIRR Framework and RRI in smart farming (Macnaghten & vd Burg)
Day 5 (19 January 2021): Conceptions of Responsibility in Relation to RRI II (vd Poel/Blok)
Day 6 (20 January 2021): Postphenomenological analysis of RRI & Stakeholder Engagement (Verbeek & Robaey)
Day 7 (21 January 2021): Final Presentatioins (Blok & vd Poel)


Prof. dr. Tsjalling Swierstra, Maastricht University (day 1)
Dr. Marianne Boenink, Twente University (day 1)
Dr. Vincent Blok, Wageningen University (day 3, 5 and 7)
Prof. dr. ir. Ibo van de Poel, Technical University Delft (day 2, 5 and 7)
Dr. Simone van der Burg, Wageningen University (day 4)
Prof. dr. Hub Zwart, Erasmus University Rotterdam (day 3)
Prof. dr. Jeroen van den Hoven, Technical University Delft (day 2)
Prof. dr. Phil Macnaghten, Wageningen University (day 4)
Dr. Zoe Robaey, Wageningen University (day 6)
Prof. Peter-Paul Verbeek, Twente University (day 6)

Required preparations
The participants are expected to read all the assigned literature, to do assignments and to actively participate in the discussions. They also have to give a final presentation (more information about the assignment will be provided during the first lecture)

Certificate / credit points
Study load is the equivalent of 5 EC.

It is obligatory to attend all sessions of the course.
– PhD students who are a member of the 4TU Center for Ethics and Technology and/or OZSW;
– Research Master students who are a member of the 4TU Center for Ethics and Technology and/or OZSW;
All others pay a tuition fee of 250 euros.
How to apply / register
Please follow the link, choose the course and fill in the forms. The deadline for registration is 1 December, 2020.
In case of too many applications, the coordinator of the course will make a selection. In case of too little applications, the course will be cancelled. In case of cancellation, the OZSW will inform participants at least one week in advance. The OZSW is not responsible for any (accommodation) costs that students may have made in preparation for the course.
Wageningen University – Vincent Blok (
Contact info
For further information related to the contents of this course, please contact the coordinator Vincent Blok at the following e-mail address For practical inquiries, please contact

Dr. Vincent Blok MBA
Associate Professor in Philosophy of Technology and Responsible Innovation

Wageningen University
Philosophy Group
Hollandseweg 1, 6706 KN, Wageningen (Building 201)
De Leeuwenborch, Room 4068
T: +31 (0) 6 146 156 40
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