Societal Engagement with Key Enabling Technologies

KETs to solve societal challenges

Key enabling technologies (KETs) are investments and technologies that allow European industries to retain competitiveness and capitalise on new markets. This is the overarching aim of collaborative teams comprising social science researchers who work with industry, manufacturers and citizens. Under the EU-funded SocKETs project, they are advancing KETs with the aim of developing a digital toolbox that prioritises societal expectations and concerns. The project will test, prototype, evaluate and distribute tools of co-creative citizen and societal engagement, from the laboratory and innovation networks of innovators, to the science museums of civil society. Its overall goals are to analyse KETs' potential for and challenges of contributing to the resolution of societal challenges and to identify the priorities of citizens and societal stakeholders for these technologies.

The “Societal Engagement with Key Enabling Technologies (SocKETs)” project has as its main objective to enable industry (e.g. manufacturers and suppliers) to engage with citizens on developing Key Enabling Technologies (KETs) that consider societal priorities, expectations and concerns. SocKETs will develop a digital, free and easy-to-use toolbox, that enable key enabling technologies to be developed in dialogue with citizens and society. 

The project brings together a consortium providing access to industry actors and innovation networks, manufacturers, professional users, and citizens. It combines the opportunity to test, prototype, evaluate and distribute tools of co-creative citizen and societal engagement, from the laboratory and innovation networks of innovators, to the science museums of civil society. 
To this end, SocKETs has developed six test cases across Europe. Three cases are coordinated by SocKETs partners with their local networks (wearable electronics and health by 2/DTI, Denmark, Industrial Automation system and the changing nature of work by 3/TEC, Spain and advanced manufacturing technologies; advanced materials; ICT, Internet of Thing, AI and blockchain tech by 5/AIRI, Italy.), and three cases are developed though linked third parties of the ECSITE network (Bulgaria, Science Centre AHHAA, Tartu, Centre for the Promotion ofThe project “Societal Engagement with Key Enabling Technologies (SocKETs)” has as its main objective to connect key enabling technologies (KETs) with society, societal challenges and citizens. The project brings together  researchers (including social science and humanities), with industry, manufacturers, professional users and citizens to analyse: 1) the potential and challenges for KETs to contribute to solving societal challenges, 2) the participatory tools and methodologies available for industry to collaborate with citizens and other societal stakeholders, and 3) priorities of citizens and societal stakeholders for KETs.

What is in it for the Western Balkans?

The project includes a Serbian partner working on e-health and challenges in societal engagement. Information about the activities can be found on the project website (which is the source of the following text):

Furthermore, if you are interested in the area, the partners developed an ecosystem mapping report available here (p. 123 f - Mapping of Key Enabling Technologies Innovation Eco-Systems. eHEALTH APPLICATIONS FOR THE NATIONAL HEALTHCARE SYSTEM IN SERBIA. TOWARDS GOOD HEALTH OF ALL).

In Serbia, the SocKETs lab intends to improve dialogue between industry, science, and citizens to effectively apply KETs in the eHeatlh innovation ecosystem. Their first co-creation activity took place at the end of 2021, where several e-health stakeholders were invited to discuss the challenges of this field.

Participants had been first familiarised with the e-health landscape analysis undertaken by the CPN team at the beginning of the project.

Participants have been invited to reflect on the four challenges previously identified:

  • Cross-cutting KETs in e-health ecosystem
  • Flow of knowledge and transfer of technology
  • Facilitating e-health adoption in society
  • Knowledge and expert assessment of e-health

But they were also encouraged to supplement this list with the challenges/barriers/opportunities they face in their daily work.

This first workshop has been the occasion to have their opinion on issues such as data protection, protection of intellectual property (patents), protection of patients’ rights, and other legal regulations and policies related to e-health and healthcare digitalisation.

Finally, as most of the participants were already knowledgeable about societal engagement, they could share their experiences with the other stakeholders.

Want to be involved in SocKETs?

If you want to join this societal engagement movement in Serbia, reach Slavica, our SocKETs lab leader!


Grant agreement ID: 958277

Project type
  • H2020
Country of the coordinating institution
Geographical focus
  • General/no specific focus
Scientifc field / Thematic focus
  • Cross-thematic/Interdisciplinary
  • Engineering and Technology
  • General
  • Medical and Health Sciences
October 2020 - September 2023

Entry created by Elke Dall on June 8, 2022
Modified on June 8, 2022