Under the leadership of Pascale Lehoux, the goal of In fieri is to generate and share new knowledge on the design, financing and commercialization of Responsible Innovation in Health (RIH).This 7-year research program obtained funding through the highly competitive, newly established Foundation Scheme of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.
It offers precious opportunities for graduate students and postdoctoral trainees to engage in transdisciplinary research geared at solving healthcare system challenges.
While many innovations have the potential to cater to the social determinants of health and to generate greater system-level benefits, established business models and financial dynamics limit their emergence.
For instance, what business model should a venture that develops cyber-therapies for patients afflicted by mental illnesses adopt? Who is the key “client”? Who will pay for its use? And how can this venture prove economically viable and offer services to those who are in need?
Scholars of responsible innovation recognize that entrepreneurs may deliberately design technological solutions of greater social value. When applied to medical technologies, it emphasizes the importance of user-centered design and of technologies that are ethically and socially responsive to the context of adoption. By doing so, it brings forward the system-level purposes of innovation (affordability, relevance, sustainability, equity, etc.).
Our empirical research will focus on adolescent health, chronic care and ageing, which are areas where new technology-based products and services may enable self-care, increase patient autonomy and address system-level challenges. Comparative and longitudinal case studies of ventures located in Brazil, France, Quebec and Ontario will be conducted.
Our international initiative catalyzes research at the interface of health services research, medicine, engineering, design, ethics, sociology, economics and public policy. It is structured around three research streams.