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SEQUOIA: a methodology for the socio-economic impact assessment of software-as-a-service and internet of services research projects

Passani, Antonella, Monacciani, Fabiana, Van der Graaf, Shenja, Spagnoli, Francesca, Bellini, Francesco, Debicki, Marie and Dini, Paolo (2014) SEQUOIA: a methodology for the socio-economic impact assessment of software-as-a-service and internet of services research projects. Research Evaluation, 23 (2). pp. 133-149. ISSN 0958-2029

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Identification Number: 10.1093/reseval/rvu004


A methodology for the self-assessment of the socio-economic impact of Software-as-a-Service and Internet of Services research projects is presented in the context of EU-funded research. The SEQUOIA methodology was developed by assessing thirty existing projects with their close collaboration. This process was documented to provide a basis for future research projects to apply the methodology on their own. The model and the empirical findings are discussed in detail, focussing on five projects that qualified as “best practices”. The main findings are that an “impact assessment culture” needs to be cultivated, encouraged, and strengthened by the European Commission and all the stakeholders. The five projects that scored highest were strong in three different ways: one group maximised internal return on investment (ROI), a second group maximised external ROI, and a third group was able to strike a balance between the two. To integrate better the assessment methodology within each project, its partners need to feel that they “own” it, and that it has been optimised for its specific institutional, organisational, and epistemological requirements. We therefore recommend the inclusion in project consortia of socio-economic experts who are able to translate the ICT research language into measurable (potential) socio-economic impacts. SEQUOIA’s assumption that in the development of an effective socio-economic impact assessment methodology it is important to integrate the social and economic dimensions of potential impact was verified and validated through an ex post rationalisation informed by economic anthropology, the usefulness of our quantitative model, and empirical evidence obtained through in-depth qualitativequantitative data gathering techniques.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2014 Oxford University Press
Divisions: Media and Communications
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HE Transportation and Communications
Date Deposited: 30 Oct 2012 12:37
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2024 20:48
Projects: ICT-258346
Funders: European Commission’s Framework Programme 7

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