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In recent years, Vall d’Hebron Institute of Research (VHIR) has promoted Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) with different actions that have been gaining more and more weight within the internal strategy of the institution. In fact, this concept is present in many of the present and future strategic lines.

2023 has been the year in which this fundamental work has become more visible with the creation of the Office of Social Impact and Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI), promoted by the Internal Strategy Department of the VHIR, and with the projects that have been awarded to us in different calls for proposals.

Office of Social Impact and Responsible Research and Innovation

The office was created with the intention of promoting research with impact, supporting the research community and positioning VHIR as a leading health institution in the development of actions aimed at working on research and innovation from a responsible perspective that takes into account the different pillars: gender equality, open science, participation, education in science, governance and ethics.

It is articulated under three axes:

  • Institutional strategy to promote research with impact and RRI.
  • Support for the Scientific Community in the design and development of RRI activities.
  • Positioning of the VHIR and networking to be leaders in Responsible Research and Innovation.

Projects awarded

In 2023 the VHIR Communication unit has been accredited as a Scientific Culture and Innovation Unit (UCC+I) by the FECYT. These units are one of the main agents in the communication, dissemination and popularisation of science, technology and innovation in Spain, constituting one of the pillars on which the scientific education of society is based.

On the other hand, the VHIR has presented 5 institutional projects, 3 of which have already been favourably resolved. Of these, one is international in scope. One will be to promote the gender and diversity perspective in research together with the LGTBQIA+ group of VHIR, and two will be to develop citizen science projects in the city of Barcelona to promote literacy and knowledge about neurodegenerative diseases and to work with educational centres and patient associations on Parkinson’s disease.

National and international collaborations

During 2023 the RRI and Impact Office has collaborated in multiple stakeholder networks to promote patient involvement, research ethics and gender mainstreaming. Some of these networks are widely recognised, such as EATRIS and EUPATI. The office has connected with more than 49 actors related to social sciences and RRI.
Currently the institution coordinates two networks: 1 European network, WISE, of more than 9 institutions, supported by the European consortium INSPIRE, to promote the gender perspective and the intersectionality of research; and 1 national network, Citizen Science and Patient Inclusion, supported by REGIC and bringing together more than 35 research institutions.

VHIR Annual Report 2023