On 26.02.2020 SPCleantech applied with a group of EU universities and companies to Erasmus+ Knowledge Alliances 2020 programme “Sustainability-Oriented Innovation Practices: Good practices and methods to establish a sustainable innovation culture” with application called “Building values=based innovation culture for sustainable business impact”. In this project participate universities and companies fro, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Netherlands and Poland (SPCleantech and Technology Transfer Center – Technical University in Krakow).
Almost every company and organisation in Europe is asked to adopt sustainability goals as parts of its mission and innovation management. Many have explicitly adapted their strategies, but few have established inherent practices in their organizational culture and manage innovation based on values of corporate sustainability. We collaborate with the few to exchange experiences and knowledge on how to translate sustainability strategies into innovation culture.
This is an Erasmus+ Knowledge Alliance Project, which will run from January 2021 for 36 months with total funding just under EUR 1,000,000. 11 partners from industry and academia establish the partnership to:
- empirically aggregate, generate and disseminate knowledge about good practices and methods in sustainability-oriented innovation and entrepreneurship (SOIE) education/training
- facilitate and advance values-based and sustainability-oriented entrepreneurship and innovation practice and education for different levels of organisational maturity
Results build on previous projects and communities to provide a reliable basis and reference for students and industrial partners to drive innovation and entrepreneurship based on values of corporate sustainability, and to facilitate organisation-wide cultural change.
Why does the consortium undertake this project?
While it took almost 30 years for human-centred design principles (and associated disciplines such as usability engineering and design thinking) to permeate organisational innovation practices, sustainability-oriented innovation just recently entered the educational curricula, academic discourse and practitioner’s attention. Innovation practitioners, facilitators and educators are not well prepared to drive SOIE as it requires new and different practices, methods and criteria and provokes new, unsolved challenges such as dealing with heterogenous stakeholder groups, multi-dimensional trade-offs and modelling long-term consequences. These challenges require responsible and sustainable innovation practices (such as anticipation, reflexivity, inclusion, deliberation, responsiveness and knowledge management), but also new practices and methods to mediate among stakeholders with dissimilar values, to ensure a shared understanding and commitment and to integrate values-based and normative evaluation criteria throughout the different stages of innovation or iterations of entrepreneurial endeavour. Missing solid experiences and established standards, promoters of sustainability-orientation currently rely on learning by doing but miss proven methods and well-documented and structured resources to learn from, to teach or to train good practices.