Six case studies – called SocKETs Labs – will be developed in different countries to engage citizens and stakeholders in KETs-based innovations for circular economy, eHealth and industrial automation. Before launching tthe SocKETs labs, we identified and analysed the technological, socio-economic and cultural contexts in which they will take place.

SocKETs mapped the innovation ecosystems in which its 6 Labs will occur. This study, based on desk research and expert interviews, analyses these innovation ecosystems in the terms of evolving systems of organizations, people, activities and resources, that are important with regards to KETs-based innovation, including their intangible and qualitative interactions and relationships. We used this approach to identify and analyse the technological, socio-economic and cultural context in which the case studies will take place.

The report includes considerations on the innovation context (e.g., cultural, market, regulatory aspects), the application scenarios, the barriers and opportunities for the introduction of new technologies, the key actors, relations and networks involved, the conditions for a co-creation process to be implemented.

Some of the common aspects across the different case studies include the massive use of digital technologies (e.g., IoT), the issue of data collection (i.e., from citizens, patients, workers) and data management, and privacy and data protection (e.g., monitoring and surveillance). Other relevant aspects are related to environmental impacts, and regulatory preparedness, including concerns on over-regulation of technology developments.

The interviews also investigated the possible interest of stakeholders in being involved and introducing co-creation and other stakeholder engagement practices along the innovation process. Most of them showed interest, even if some were not sure about the benefits of engaging the citizens, and asked for a clearer focus on the goals of such co-creation actions. The most significant motivations include the opportunity to cooperate with other stakeholders, and share needs and knowledge, and innovation results, and good practices. Some stakeholders were also interested in increasing the awareness on the technologies among citizens, and showcasing their innovations.

Read the full report.