Transformation through Responsible, Open & Inclusive Innovation: the New CHERRIES Model
The CHERRIES project implemented experiments to develop healthcare innovations in three European regions –the Republic of Cyprus, Murcia (Spain), and Örebro (Sweden). The experiments were built upon a specific methodology – the CHERRIES model.
The implementation of the model revealed its strengths of the model but also highlighted some critical issues that should be considered when applying the methodology.
A wider framework that is rooted in Transition Studies will amend the CHERRIES model, which itself is based on ideas and methodologies stemming from Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) and Open Innovation.
CHERRIES project combines two different logics of innovation policy-making to increase economic competitiveness in a region and to improve healthcare services by developing new practices that meet the needs of healthcare professionals and patients better than current practices. The project responds to challenges in the healthcare sector using demand-side innovation policy and engages in “Science with and for Society” processes. The CHERRIES model, implemented in the Republic of Cyprus, Murcia, and Örebro, consists of three main steps: need identification, selection of a solution, and co-creation of solution. The model was successful in the three regions, taking approximately one year from identifying a need to testing a co-created solution. The model’s strengths include speed, an engaged quadruple helix, open calls for needs, and co-creation processes.
An improved version of the CHERRIES model aims to address issues identified in the original model. It proposes adding conceptual building blocks, such as a Healthcare Innovation Hub, and an additional step in the experimental methodology. The improved model focuses on a horizontal System Innovation approach that mobilizes technology, market mechanisms, regulations, and social innovations to solve complex societal problems.
The theoretical pillars of RRI and Open Innovation should be amended with approaches stemming from Sustainability Transition Studies. Thus it is valuable to create stable relationships between actors to develop shared perspectives and joint projects in the context of healthcare.
The Healthcare Innovation Hub is an institutionalized management element within a regional healthcare innovation ecosystem that can facilitate an innovation ecosystem around joint value creation, experimentation, implementation, and strategic niche management.
The establishment of a Healthcare Innovation Hub will improve healthcare services. The hub should be legitimized with a mandate to change, and it should mobilize and engage a diverse range of actors to drive change. Also, there is a need to manage people, processes, and expectations while avoiding building a bureaucratic structure.
The Hub should initiate experiments with clearly defined objectives and processes, building on the CHERRIES model, which aims to develop responsible and open healthcare innovations. In addition, it is important to have practical, organizational, and institutional aspects of the solutions, and the facilitation of co-evolution of framework conditions. The overall reflexivity during the whole process and anticipation of the intended and unintended effects of new solutions on the system are also essential for developing responsible solutions.