Menu image/svg+xml

Current discussion on the introduction of an innovation principle and the relationship to the precautionary principle Short Study

In order to improve the innovation climate in Germany and Europe, representatives of research-intensive large companies and meanwhile the EU are calling for the introduction of an “innovation principle”, which should accompany on the precautionary principle, which is used in the approval testing of new products and processes.

In a short study for the NABU the IÖW analyzed the question discussed in the political arena on the establishment of an innovation principle and compared this with the established precautionary principle. Firstly, the discourse about an innovation principle and its effectiveness and relevance in the political and legislative sphere was analyzed, as well as core elements of the innovation principle. In addition, the precautionary principle has been made more concrete in an action-oriented manner and the tensions surrounding the principle of innovation have been highlighted.

With regard to the available proposals and documents, it should be noted that these are primarily aimed at an “innovation climate” and offer little guidance in concrete weighing processes. It seems necessary that the approaches of the “Better Regulation Agenda” and the regulatory impact assessment should be put into concrete terms and that a systematic record of the reasons for concern and the benefit promises should be made. In addition, opening up research, development and innovation processes is promising. This was illustrated by the case study Gene Editing (CRISPR/cas) and GeneDrives.