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Revista Lasallista de Investigación

Print version ISSN 1794-4449

Abstract

ESCOBAR LONDONO, Julia Victoria; CASTANO, Diego Alberto; RUIZ RUIZ, Marilza Piedad  and  RESTREPO BOTERO, Juan Carlos. Authentic evaluation of the social impact of university research's processes, projects and products: an approach from the research groups. Rev. Lasallista Investig. [online]. 2016, vol.13, n.1, pp.166-180. ISSN 1794-4449.

Introduction. By achieving the goal of having professors and students support their research practices according to an assessment of the social impacts of their research processes, projects and products, there is an advance towards an integral formation of the professionals as Colombian and worldwide citizens. Such professionals are required to reach high transformation levels in the diverse dimensions, in order to promote processes for maintaining and improving their life projects and professional practices. Objective. To describe crucial elements for the generation of a methodology for assessing the social impact of the scientific and technological research projects and products developed in higher education institutions. Materials and methods. The methodological approach was based on the application of quantitative and qualitative focuses. The techniques used were documental revision, interviews to focus groups, design of human, structural and relational capital indicators, a comparison scale for directors and SWOT, among others. Results. Nowadays, universities have the challenge of fulfilling the ethical commitment that is the base of their creation. They must assess the social impact of their research processes, projects and products when that commitment is assumed towards themselves and to other social actors. Conclusion. The challenge now is to form researchers who do not move away from the university´s historical responsibility and achieve high qualification levels and a high mastery of strategic, technical and assessing instruments for measuring social impacts, thus orienting institutional choice making and contributing to a new social order in which equity and justice can be real. An advance towards an authentic assessment of the social impact of the processes, projects and products is achieved, as those who lead university research in Colombia can go beyond the simple scientometric measuring and take responsibility and social commitment paths.

Keywords : Social impact assessment; formation; social responsibility; higher education; research groups.

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