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Research infrastructures provide the tools scientists need to understand the world and, in some cases, make it a better place. But these resources - from telescopes to biobanks, and from museum archives to wave energy test sites - cost more than most countries can afford. The EU-funded PAERIP project has started the ball rolling for new partnerships to share resources between Europe and Africa
Published: 13 October 2015
Earth monitoring - observing land, security and climate change from space - can help countries protect resources and improve lives. But the technology is no use without human capacity. So that capacity-building in Africa targets the continent's priorities, an EU-funded project brought together African and European specialists to build networks and make key investment decisions.
Published: 4 September 2015
The demand for wood products and services is increasing worldwide due to economic and climate policy driving forces. It is therefore imperative for experts in forestry research to develop a common framework which could facilitate interactions between different areas of expertise and the exchange of scientific knowledge.
Published: 19 November 2014
Access to biological resources such as cells and tissue samples is the lifeblood of biomedical research. Biobanks and biomolecular resource centres collect, store and distribute this material, the related data and powerful analytical tools, but none of them can single-handedly meet the growing, diverse needs of Europe's research community. EU funding has enabled major repositories to link up and share these resources.
Published: 22 September 2014
The scientific community has expressed an increased need for radiation sources capable of producing ultrashort pulses, with extreme brightness and coherence. In fact, this according to experts is where the future lies in terms of new materials characterisation, life science applications, drug development and many other applications.
Published: 23 July 2014
What do Europeans think of big issues affecting their lives, from schools to policing and healthcare? While elections and opinion polls offer a snapshot of thought on particular topics, they do not delve into the deeper feelings, hopes and fears of Europeans on key questions. The ESS charts changing attitudes and behaviour patterns of the diverse European populations on key policy issues, shedding light on the complex relationships between citizens and institutions.
Published: 13 June 2013
Covering 72% of the Earth and supplying half its oxygen, oceans are our planet's life support system. They play a crucial role in distributing heat, carbon, oxygen, nutrients, and, of course, water around the world, influencing our climate and our weather. The effects of global warming on sea levels, currents and water heat are still only partly understood, making predictions for future climate conditions difficult. But a worldwide programme using thousands of plastic floats is currently monitoring the oceans and - with crucial help from European researchers - is finding answers to what moves the seas.
Published: 25 February 2013
Scientists in Cameroon, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States have discovered that chimpanzee populations living in pretty close proximity are considerably more different genetically than are humans living on different continents. The study shows that genomics can play a key role in chimpanzee conservation. Presented in the journal PLoS Genetics, it was funded in part by the EUPRIM-NET ('European primate network: specialised infrastructures and procedures for biological and biomedical research') project, which clinched more than EUR 4.7 million under the Infrastructures Thematic area of the EU's Sixth Framework Programme (FP6). EUPRIM-NET allowed in particular the scientists to access samples available at the partner research infrastructures.
Published: 28 March 2012
Contrary to what the expensive-tissue hypothesis says — that some tissues need more energy for their resting metabolism than others — researchers in Switzerland have discovered that when the brain of a mammal increases in size, the digestive organs do not become smaller. Presented in the journal Nature, the study was funded in part by the SYNTHESYS ('Synthesis of systematic resources') project, which has received EUR 7.2 million under 'Research Infrastructures' Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).
Published: 8 December 2011
An international team of scientists has discovered that warming in the Arctic region has triggered the accelerated melting of a Greenlandic glacier. Presented in The Cryosphere journal, the findings reveal that the overall mass loss of the Mittivakkat Glacier for 2011 has amounted to 2.45 metres, 0.29 metres higher than what was recorded in 2010. The study was funded in part by the INTERACT ('International network for terrestrial research and monitoring in the Arctic') project, which has clinched EUR 7.3 million under Research Infrastructures of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).
NB: This article is more than 4 years old so the information may not be up to date.
Published: 23 September 2011