Can Responsible Research and Innovation guide us in our eating patterns?
Posted by Fondazione Cariplo on 21 Oct 2015
European Researchers' Night in Milan, at the National Science and Technology Museum
with Carlo Mango, Fondazione Cariplo and Andrea Calori, Food Policy Milano
Learning about how we eat in Milan and practice Responsible Research and Innovation
This year, the annual appointment with science and researchers, promoted by the European Union in more than 300 cities doubled, passing from the traditional one day appointment to a weekend of events, meetings and shows dedicated to researchers and citizens to meet each other and share their views on present, past and futures of science.
It is within this umbrella - an event known as the European Researchers' Night - that we thought of proposing a debate about Responsible Research and Innovation as a possible approach to developing a food policy for Milan. Carlo Mango, Director of the Research Area at Fondazione Cariplo and Andrea Calori, from the organization that realized the first Food Policy for Milan, had an exciting discussion with a numerous and very diverse range of citizens. Participants of any age had the chance to learn about the method and approach that has been guiding the development of the Food Policy for Milan, indicated by RRI Tools partners as a best practice, as well as the main preliminary results of this project. Carlo Mango and Andrea Calori interacted with participants and tried to explore the major areas of intervention when thinking about food governance. Answers were diverse and included waste disposal, food education and local production.
The enthusiasm of the public was evident since the beginning. Food came out as a good topic to explore not only how a best practice in terms of RRI can be shared with society, but also how to introduce and practice RRI with the public. We met engaged and active participants happy to have a space where they could propose personal views, doubts and issues. This, even though the event started only at 10 p.m., indicates that open practices with meaningful inclusion have good chances for success.
Although the practices of citizens' inclusion within the governance of science and research are still limited in terms of quality and quantity, at least within the Italian national context, this event has certainly constituted a great occasion to converse with people and serves as an inspiration for future experiences and practices of RRI.
Valentina Amorese works on RRI Tools at the Fondazione Cariplo in Milan, the RRI Tools Hub coordinator for Italy and Switzerland