Living labs and open innovation 2.0 - article in New Europe
The European Innovation Agenda is a permanent contract of trust and improvement between the institutional actors and most of the civil society stakeholders. Living Labs and Open Innovation 2.0 are key words in this collaborative agenda, where we can put in evidence the role of players as ENoLL international non-profit association, located in Brussels, with special responsabilities in this active networking challenge.
In this context, “Living Labs are user-centred, open innovation ecosystems based on a systematic user co-creation approach integrating research and innovation processes in real life communities and settings, placing the citizen at the centre of innovation, and having thus shown the ability to better mould the opportunities offered by new ICT concepts and solutions to the specific needs and aspirations of local contexts, cultures, and creativity potentials.
In terms of strategy, “over the last decade Innovation itself has moved from different phases from open innovation through networked innovation and now to participative innovation, which is an integral characteristic of Open innovation 2.O. Open Innovation 2.O (OI2) is a new paradigm based on principles of integrated collaboration, co-created shared value, cultivated innovation ecosystems, unleashed exponential technologies, and extraordinarily rapid adoption. OI2 aims to enhance simultaneous value creation for civil, business, academia, and government markets. – this reflects a very proactive attitude towards the effective changes society and economy are facing.
Living Labs are one example of the open innovation 2.0 ecosystem development (beyond traditional test beds that have usually been technology driven) – all Living Lab experiences have in common a user-centric co-design process for development and implementation of innovative ICT-based products and services, being instrumental to the integration of RDI with territorial development policy, assuming different possible configurations (which depend on the structure of the underlying innovation system) : as vertical tools for promoting user-driven RDI in a given sector (e.g. eHealth, Mobility, eGovernment, Cultural Heritage or eInclusion); as ‘orchestration’ agents between individual users, citizens, grassroots communities (bottom-up) and the other 4P stakeholders and as territorial innovation or “Smart Regional” models. The European Network of Living Labs (ENoLL) has grown in ‘waves’ up to this day. To this date, 9 Waves have been launched resulting in 395 historically accepted Living Labs all over the world with +170 active members as per today. The community can be characterized as largely practice-based, supported by academic research into Living Labs and provides co-creation, user engagement, test and experimentation facilities targeting innovation in many different domains such as energy, media, mobility, healthcare, agrifood, etc. As such, ENoLL is well placed to act as a platform for best practice exchange, learning and support, and Living Lab international project development.