ORION - Open Responsible research and Innovation to further Outstanding kNowledge

Uploaded by RRI Tools on 06 October 2017
Last modified on 01 October 2021



From 01/05/2017 to 30/04/2021


ORION will explore ways in which research and funding organizations in life sciences and biomedicine can open up the way they fund, organize and do research. The project aims to trigger evidence-based institutional, cultural and behavioural changes in Research Funding and Performing Organizations (RFPOs), targeting researchers, management staff and high-level leadership.


Our long-term vision is to “embed” Open Science and Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) principles (ethics, gender, governance, open access, public engagement, and science education) in RFPOs, in their policies, practices and processes to organize and do research.


After an assessment exercise on Open Science awareness and practice, we will co-design and perform “co-creation experiments” with different groupings of RRI actors. Our experiments will tackle three specific challenges of Open Science:

  1. Opening up the research engine: ORION participating RFPOs will experiment with different and complementary approaches to embed Open Science in the way funding and research are organised.
  2. Identifying risks and opportunities presented by disruptive technologies: We will explore what risks and opportunities have technologies such as genome editing by CRISPR-Cas9 from a range of perspectives by engaging with multiple stakeholders – researchers, funders, patient associations, industry, and legal and ethical experts.
  3. Running multi-stakeholder Citizen science (CS) projects in fundamental research: We would like to involve multiple stakeholders in scientific projects from project conception to hypothesis generation, data collection, analysis and further exploitation in a CS project in life sciences and biomedicine. We would like to explore benefits for both sites researchers and citizens.

Expected Results

These challenges will serve as case studies to try out different co-design/co-creation methods with multiple stakeholders, and engaging unusual blends of actors, e.g. funders and citizens, or researchers, industry and citizens.

We will identify drivers and barriers, interests and values, and in some cases produce “prototypes”, in the format of new Citizen Science projects, new research strategies and new funding frameworks, and last but not least new training material.

ORION Open Science Podcast - intended to be an easy and entertaining way to learn more about Open Science and research, a series of interviews exploring the good, the bad, and the ugly of the current scientific system, and what Open Science practices can do to improve the way we do science.

ORION inspiring stories booklet filled with ideas & examples on how to embed Open Science & RRI  in Research Funding and Performing Organizations, and how to engage the public in science through co-creation. public dialogue. gaming, citizen science, arts & more

ORION open science MOOC - free online training course consisting of six easily digestible modules which explore different aspects of Open Science and allow researchers in life sciences to gain a certificate in Open Science

Menu of co-creation tools - This handy guide provides an overview of 31 participatory methods that can be used to involve different stakeholders in the research process with links to case studies illustrating the methods in practice

How-to guide on public dialogues - A practical four page guide on how to run a public dialogue as a tool for promoting open science

Open Science Researcher Checklist - A step-by-step checklist for researchers to assess where they can make changes to open science practices in their day-to-day research

ORION Open Science Factsheets - 15 brief, informative, and easy-to-understand one-page factsheets on Open Science (topics: Biohacking and DIYBio Research / Career Benefits of Open Science/ Citizen science/ Commercialisation of Research/ Communicating Animal Research/ Crowd Science / Research Data Management/ Open Access/ Open Research Data/ Open Source and Software/ Pre-Registration/ Predatory Journals/ Preprints/ Public Engagement/ Reproducibility)

ORION case studies for training purposes - Three case studies for use in short workshops to stimulate discussion about open science principles and practical actions. The case studies outline 3 scenarios loosely tied to aspects of open access, open data, and public engagement

ORION Open Science E-learning platform - contains four lessons on different aspects of Open Science and is available in English and Czech.

The Virus Fighter. an online game co-created by Babraham Institute scientists and public engagement professionals together with students at a local state school, which engages members of the public with the science behind infections, immunity and vaccinations.


1.    Fundació Centre de Regulació Genòmica (CRG), Spain
2.    Masarykova  Univerzita (MU), Czech Republic
3.    The Babraham Institute (BI), UK
4.    Max-Delbruck-Centrum Fur Molekulare Medizin In Der Helmholtz-Gemeinschaft (MDC), Germany
5.    Instituto de Salud Carlos III (ISCIII), Spain
6.    Vetenskap & Allmänhet (VA), Sweden
7.    Universitat Autònoma de Brcelona (UAB), Spain
8.    Jihomoravske Centrum Pro Mezinarodni Mobilitu, Zajmove Sdruzeni Pravnickych Osob (JCMM), Czech Republic
9.    Fondazione ANT Italia Onlus (ANT), Italy

Associated partners:

1.    Building and Promoting Excellence in Life Science in Europe (EU-LIFE), Europe-wide
2.    Helmholtz Association (HA), Germany
3.    Biotechnology and Biological Science Research Council (BBSRC), UK
4.    Neuron Fund for Support of Science (NEURON), Czech Republic
5.    eLIFE (eLIFE), World-wide
6.    European Citizen Science Association (ECSA), Europe-wide
7.    BIOCAT (BIOCAT), Catalonia
8.    Foster Platform (FOSTER), Europe-wide

Michela Bertero

Centre for Genomic Regulation

Head of International and Scientfic Affairs

Total cost: EUR 3 157 301,25
EU contribution: EUR 3 157 301,25

ORION is a 4-year project that has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 741527. This project addresses the Horizon 2020 call for “SwafS-04-2016” under the Science with and for Society Work Programme.

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