Responsible Innovation


Responsible Innovation for Industry Professionals

This responsible innovation short course equips learners with the concepts and practices required to meet some of the biggest challenges facing society.


By developing skills in creative problem-solving, public engagement, and ethics, the course offers a foundational understanding of Responsible Innovation and provides an introduction to the AREA Framework, with the focus on the Anticipation and Reflection elements.  

Taking place over 6 weeks (including a reading week, this course comprises an estimated 15 hours of self-paced online learning, 6 hours of live online workshops with our expert tutors and 5 hours of assessment. The course covers the history of responsible innovation; ethics, integrity, inclusivity and diversity, public engagement, and social responsibility.


Who this course is for

This course will be relevant to anyone working in the following industries, and you do not need to have prior knowledge of responsible innovation to attend:

  • innovation
  • science
  • technology
  • research and development (R&D)
  • product development
  • public policy
  • the charity sector
  • government
  • innovation-adjacent sectors


Course benefits

  • Designed with the same rigorous approach we take when developing our undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.
  • Active learning provides you with the opportunity to apply the skills and knowledge you are being taught.
  • A reflective discussion-based approach that provides you with many opportunities to collaborate with learners from other organisations and sectors.
  • 2-hour live course kick-off in Week 1 where you will be able to get to know the course tutor(s) and have the chance to network with your fellow learners.
  • 2-hour live workshop in Week 2 and Week 4 giving you the opportunity to put into practice the knowledge and skills you have learnt and get feedback from discipline experts.
  • Tailored individual feedback from course tutor(s) with subject expertise throughout the course, as well as detailed feedback on your assessment.

Course syllabus 

Week 1:
  • What is Responsible Innovation?  
    Week 1
  • Introduction to the AREA Framework
  • Introduction to critical reflection
  • Gendered innovation  
  • Gender biases in innovation

This week also includes a 2-hour live course kick-off to introduce learners to the course.

Week 2:
  • Ethical responsibilities of innovators
    Week 2
  • Professional responsibilities of innovators
  • Social responsibility
  • Hippocratic oath for innovators

This week also includes a 2-hour live virtual face-to-face session focussed on the first two week’s learning.

Week 3:
  • Reading week – This week is for you to reflect on and consolidate your learning so far. 
    Week 3
  • There will be no formal learning activities this week.
Week 4:
  • Live workshop (live virtual face-to-face session)
    Week 4
  • Who is responsible when innovation goes wrong?  
  • Responsibility in sociotechnical systems
  • Social values and design
  • What problems are worth solving?  
  • Visions of the future

This week also includes a 2-hour live virtual face-to-face session focussed on everything learnt so far.

Weeks 5 and 6 (Assessment):
  • The course is assessed by a 1000-word reflective statement.
    Weeks 5 and 6
  • The deadline for submission is the end of Week 6 meaning you have two weeks (Weeks 5 and 6) to complete the assessment.
  • To prepare for this, you will build up your writing skills by completing shorter formative assignments throughout Weeks 1-4.
  • There are no scheduled online learning activities or live sessions during these weeks but you will still be able to ask the course tutors any questions you may have.


Accreditation and Certification

CPD Certified Logo
  • The content of the course has been certified by the CPD Certification Service as conforming to continuing professional development principles.
  • Pass certificates will be awarded to learners who complete all of the required learning and pass the final assessment. 

Who will you learn with?

Responsible Innovation Programme Director

Dr Stephen Hughes
Dr Stephen Hughes is a Lecturer and Teaching Fellow at UCL’s Department of Science and Technology Studies. He is responsible for the delivery of UCL’s Responsible Innovation programme to 13 EPSRC-funded Centres for Doctoral Training. His research explores cultures of responsibility in research contexts and the role that emotions play in researchers’ conceptions of responsibility.

Entry requirements 

  • There are no entry requirements for this course and no previous knowledge of Responsible Innovation is needed.  
  • The course is relevant to anyone working in academia, research and development, science, technology, and innovation. As well as those working in public policy, the charity sector and government. 
  • Please note that this course is not recommended for full-time students. If you are in full-time education, please see our course for Research Students.


  • Standard course fee: £1200
  • Please contact us directly for group bookings.

Learner reviews

The Responsible Innovation course was so interesting, thought-provoking and eye-opening. It's certainly got me thinking about how I approach innovation in my role.” [Senior IP and Commercial Research Manager, Healthcare sector]

“I came away from the course with a changed view of how I approached innovation, and an awareness around ethical challenges that simply wasn't there before.”  [Martin, Associate Director, Mace (Engineering sector)]

“This course was a thoroughly thought-provoking look at biases in research. It allowed us to think freely and critically, then gave us tools and processes to apply to our everyday work. I enjoyed the course a lot and have taken very valuable lessons and insights from it”. [Jeremy, Transport for London]

Book your place

Upcoming start dates

  • 17th April 2023 - Bookings Closed

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