The ORION project seeks to promote institutional change in life science research performing and research funding organisations by performing co-creation experiments in three specific areas where stakeholders do not already frequently collaborate; (i) Research strategy and funding, (ii) identifying risks and opportunities presented by disruptive technologies and (iii) citizen science...
To help open science up to a wider audience, ORION organised a number of public dialogues in the UK, Sweden, Germany and the Czech Republic during 2019-2020. One purpose of the dialogues was to explore public attitudes to genome editing technology, which has revolutionized scientific research in the past decade and has the potential for broad societal impact. The dialogues also aimed to understand how to engage the public on disruptive technologies and how public engagement strategies could vary between countries. Information about the potential use of the technology has led to a wide variety of different opinions and reactions from the public, which are not always based on scientific fact. The empirical evidence gathered during the dialogues will provide the basis of future communications strategies within the ORION institutions.
A major goal of the ORION project was to open a funding call that encouraged different stakeholders to come together and present new and innovate ways to make science more accessible and participatory. The overall aim of this funding call was to support long-term collaboration between unusual/different stakeholders.
The ORION Open Science Podcast started as a way to communicate with new audiences. For science to be open, information has to be accessible, and taking advantage of this unique audio medium was too good an opportunity to pass up. The podcast officially launched with episode one in 2019 and is now in its second season with the podcast hosts Luiza Bengtsson and Zoe Ingram who have deep dive discussions with experts on a wide variety of topics related to Open Science.
A public dialogue is a qualitative research process during which public audiences interact with a variety of experts to deliberate on issues relevant to future strategy or policy decisions. A public dialogue provides an opportunity for organisations to gather public views to inform their activities so that they are aligned with society, particularly relevant for publicly funded research organisations. They should provide a balanced view of the topic, include factual information, and space to discuss opinions and societal/ethical considerations. Dialogues give everyone the chance to speak, to question and be questioned, to develop their own views and opinions, allowing in- depth discussions and offer insight into the reasoning behind people’s decisions.
The ORION public dialogues on genome editing were conducted in the UK, Germany, Czech Republic and Sweden during 2019 and 2020 and organized by Ipsos MORI in collaboration with the ORION Project. The dialogues sought to explore public attitudes to fundamental life sciences research when revolutionary genome editing technologies are used in order to inform research organisations about when and how to engage audiences with emerging technologies. A report is available for each of the countries the public dialogue events were held in, as well as an overarching report which synthesises findings from across all the events
Online education is now more popular and essential than ever. Students are supplementing, and during the pandemic even replacing, their in-person education with online lectures and professionals are taking advantage of the convenience to learn new skills online. One example of an online course format is the MOOC which stands for Massive Open Online Course and has become popular among universities who put courses online for anyone to take, free of charge.
Embedding institutional change is a challenging process that requires the buy-in from diverse groups of stakeholders. The ORION partner Instituto de Salud Carlos III in Spain had the ambitious goal of embedding Responsible Research and Innovation, RRI, right at the heart of the institution so that it would filter through into all of their research practices and projects.
Taking Open Science ideas and putting them into practice is a challenge. Even at institutional level there are many different stakeholders with different motivations and challenges who need to support Open Science initiatives. At a national level, these challenges are even greater with many institutions and governing bodies needing to find common ground. This is a challenge that has been taken up in the ORION project and the Czech partner CEITEC - the Central European Institute of Technology, set about changing the way that their institution engaged in Open Science.