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Presentation by Fabrice Flipo

Political prayers lie on the growth’s comeback to ensure financial incomes to be given out. That for science is seen by many essentially as a tool to provide techniques able to raise productivity, whatever the environmental or social consequences. For those reasons, and especially since the second half of the 20th century, public policy and investment have allowed unprecedented technical development and the economy of promises, the genuine aim of those efforts being hidden by the general concept of progress. Links between science and economical growth should be underlined and questioned. After rigorous definition of science and technoscience concepts, we will demonstrate and illustrate their entanglement with growth, thanks to economical theories and many examples of business-driven research. We will discuss the multiple roles of research and innovation for growth, which are broadening knowledge but also contributing to the emergence of problems and limiting the funding available for other kind of science activities. Taking into account that economical growth will no more be achievable, partly due to innovation stagnation, and no more desirable, members of the French NGO Citizen Sciences are questioning the future research and innovation system, pointing out the necessity of accurate choices for research agenda. According to a degrowth scenario, this scientists and citizens community imagines democratic tools, such as citizen conventions and research modalities promoting non-scientists engagement, in order to allow science that benefit to all citizens. We underlined the need for transdisciplinarity, low tech orientations and social innovations in research.