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Reconciling Science, Innovation and Precaution through the Engagement of Stakeholders (RECIPES)

Reconciling Science, Innovation and Precaution through the Engagement of Stakeholders (RECIPES) is an EU project funded under the Horizon2020 Programme for Research and Innovation. Its overall objective is to reconcile science, innovation and precaution through scenarios and new tools for the application of the precautionary principle based on co-creation with policy-makers and other stakeholders, linking scientific excellence with social awareness and responsibility.

The specific objectives of the project include:
• Taking stock of the implementation of the precautionary principle in various contexts at the international EU and national levels since the publication of the Commission’s Communication in 2000. The aim is to understand the impact of the precautionary principle in various fields and on several policy levels. The rise of the “innovation principle” is also going to be described.

• Examining the application of the precautionary principle through case-studies in order to grasp the complexity and the controversies around the principle.
• Development of scenarios for the future of the precautionary principle or the innovation principle. The aim is to highlight potentials and risks of allowing the two principles to dominate the development of law and governance related to new and emerging technologies. The scenarios will serve as a starting point for the co-creation of new tools and guidelines.
• Introduction of mechanisms for public engagement in S&T decision-making which will allow to take all relevant concerns into account and broaden the basis of participation. RECIPES will make use of mechanisms to engage citizens and stakeholders in the co-creation of new tools for innovation and precaution.
• Development of tools and guidelines to the precautionary principle to help policymakers and other stakeholders to assess risks and take into account innovation.
RECIPES will carry out legal research on the precautionary principle with stakeholders being engaged in all stages of research. By developing new empirically sound and theoretically-grounded scenarios and tools for reconciling science, innovation and precaution, the project seeks to address a controversial and yet unresolved question of how to protect health and safety of persons and the environment whilst promoting innovation.

Eight case-studies have been selected by the RECIPES Consortium and will be analysed in order to provide evidence about how and why the precautionary principle has been applied successfully or failed in certain contexts. The case studies cover a broad spectrum of areas where the precautionary principle is applied, namely:
• New gene-editing techniques (CRISPR-Cas9)
• Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO’s)
• Endocrine disruptors
• Neonicotinoid insecticides
• Nanotechnologies
• Glyphosate
• Financial risks and urban waste planning
• Stakeholder case-study (to be determined by the stakeholders during the research)

The RECIPES project starts in January 2019 and will run until December 2021. The project’s consortium is composed of the following 11 partners:
Maastricht University (UM), Project coordinator, Netherlands
Applied Research and Communications Fund (ARC Fund), Bulgaria
Conoscenza e Innovazione (Knowledge & Innovation, K&I), Italy
Danish Board of Technology Foundation (DBT), Denmark
Dialogic Gemeinnutzige Gesellschaft fur Kommunikations – und Kooperationsforschung mbH, Germany
Ecologic Institut gemeinnutzige GmbH, Germany
Humboldt-Universitat zu Berlin (UBER), Germany
Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies Potsdam (IASS), Germany
Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen (Rathenau Institute, KNAW), Netherlands
Oesterreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften (OEAW), Austria Universitetet I Bergen (UiB), Norway

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