Over the past few years, innovation has been developing a new characteristic, it has become inherently suspect. This is partly due to the series of recent market events which have contributed to the ever-increasing attention directed at the notion of responsible innovation. The race to market for technological and non-technological innovations is ever increasing in pace and enduring pressure from an ever more globalised market. At the same time, the newly released products and services stand under constant scrutiny by the hordes of social media users, capable of destroying a company’s global reputation in a matter of minutes. It is therefore now in an organisation’s best interest to be responsible. Naturally, an organisation’s very survival depends on its ability to create value and be profitable, in other words, innovation is essential to the modern organisation’s growth and development. However, innovation and responsibility have traditionally been considered to hamper one another. How can a firm achieve the right balance to keep innovating on products, services and processes while implementing responsibility all along its activities? Research suggests that this very balance could become an invaluable source of competitive advantage. Design thinking, in analogy with industrial design, is a creative discipline which is deployed within organisations’ innovation processes. As such, design thinking is a very useful tool in developing responsible innovation, since it combines scientific rigour and technique with an understanding of human needs, while also incorporating an organisation’s own economic imperatives. This modern approach therefore aims to achieve a responsible development for both the organisation and its innovations. This paper will begin by determining exactly what is meant by responsible innovation. It will then describe why design thinking is an effective method for integrating responsible innovation and present the results of a study which aimed to develop a way of integrating responsibility into the innovation process, using design thinking.
PAVIE, X. and CARTHY, D. (2013). An Integration of Responsible Innovation in the Financial Sector through Design Thinking. ESSEC Business School.