Research Infrastructures

News and Headlines

21 June 2018

EMBRC-ERIC opens for excellence in marine biology and ecology research

On 19 June 2018, the European Marine Biological Resource Centre (EMBRC-ERIC) celebrated its adoption as a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (EMBRC-ERIC) and the onset of its operational phase. The event was held at Sorbonne Université - Campus Pierre et Marie Curie, where EMBRC has its Headquarters, at the presence of dignitaries from EU Commission and French Ministry MESER representatives, in addition to governmental delegations from nine EU countries. “EMBRC-ERIC is a milestone for services to science furthering our knowledge of marine life and its implications for the human conditions.” – says Ilaria Nardello, the Executive Director.

Hosted by France and based in Paris, EMBRC-ERIC is a pan-European Research Infrastructure (RI) for marine biology and ecology research, providing state of the art facilities, technology platforms and advanced services to study marine organisms and ecosystems. Among its objectives, it is to enable new technologies and marine biological models to further our investigation capabilities for life-science breakthrough discoveries, and to support a modern approach to long-term marine ecological monitoring efforts. “EMBRC ERIC is a truly multidisciplinary effort and a driver in the development of blue biotechnologies, including at regional level, supporting both fundamental and applied research activities for sustainable solutions in the food, health and environmental sectors.” – said Mr. Jean-David MALO, Director of Open Innovation and Open Science, European Commission - DG Research and Innovation.

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20 June 2018

International Conference for Research Infrastructures 2018

12-14 September 2018, Vienna, Austria

The ICRI conference provides a forum for strategic discussion on international cooperation for research infrastructures at global level, and highlights the essential role of research infrastructures in addressing global challenges and contributing to sustainable development goals. Participants from more than 50 countries are expected to take part in the International Conference for Research Infrastructures (ICRI) 2018. Speakers representing high-level stakeholders from across the globe and high profile institutions will intervene in the debate.

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31 May 2018

European Commission and EIROForum organisations confirm key role of Research Infrastructures for science policy

On Wednesday, Jean-Eric Paquet, the European Commission's Director-General for Research and Innovation and Ian Mattaj, the current Chair of the European Intergovernmental Research Organisation forum (EIROforum), signed the work plan 2018-2020 to implement the Statement of Intent between the Commission and EIROForum, dated from 2010. The Forum represents Europe’s eight largest research organisations: CERN, EMBL, EUROFusion, ESA, ESO, ESRF, European XFEL and ILL.

The three-year plan focuses on European science policy and the innovation potential and industry involvement in Research Infrastructures. Special attention will be given to the implementation of the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) and the long-term sustainability of Pan-European Research Infrastructures.The Commission and the EIROforum Council also discussed how science contributes to solving societal challenges, and the role of Research Infrastructures in Horizon Europe – the EU's next research and innovation funding programme that will follow Horizon 2020 – and in science diplomacy.

The Commission and EIROforum shared their commitment to foster scientific excellence, strengthen science policies, increase the impact on citizens' lives and boost technological development.

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3 May 2018

ELIXIR report demonstrating the importance of public bioinformatics data to SMEs

The EU-funded European Life-science Infrastructure for Biological Information (ELIXIR) aims to construct and operate a sustainable infrastructure for biological information to support life science research and its application in medicine, environment protection, the bio-industries and society.

ELIXIR's recently published report confirms that small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) in Europe greatly rely on open bioinformatics data for doing innovative projects. For example, the Spanish SME Mind the Byte is developing new computer modelling used in drug discovery services by pharmaceutical companies, which would not be possible without unrestricted access to public databases. Through analysing the business models of SMEs, the report systematically maps the ways open data contribute to innovation and generate business value for the companies. It features case-studies of seven innovation-driven European SMEs, each with different business model and with a different way of using open bioinformatics data.

ELIXIR involves 20 countries and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) as members. In addition, ELIXIR coordinates and receives funding from several grants through the EU's Horizon 2020 Programme, including ELIXIR-EXCELERATE and CORBEL.

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20 March 2018

New Pan European Research Infrastructure for Chemical Biology

The European Commission has granted the status of European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) to EU-OPENSCREEN setting up a Pan European RI for Chemical Biology.

Hosted in Germany and based in Berlin, the new ERIC will provide a single access point to screening platforms as well as chemistry and biology facilities.

The services offered will include access to resources, tools and facilities to researchers from Europe and beyond providing high quality infrastructure service for research on the molecular mechanisms of biological processes. International interdisciplinary research and collaboration with Industry will be at the centre of the activities.

The preparatory phase of EU-OPENSCREEN received EU funding of EUR 3 700 000 from the 7th Framework Programme.

8 March 2018

Bulgarian Presidency Flagship Conference on Research Infrastructures

22 – 23 March 2018, Sofia, Bulgaria

The Bulgarian Ministry of Education and Science, in partnership with the European Commission, DG RTD, will host in Sofia the 2018 Bulgarian Presidency Flagship conference "Research Infrastructures beyond 2020 - sustainable and effective ecosystem for science and society". More than 30 high-level speakers will gather in Sofia Tech Park to discuss a sustainable and inclusive European Research Infrastructure ecosystem.

The main purpose of the Conference will present the key elements of the Action Plan and reflections on the Long term sustainability of Research Infrastructures Staff Working Document PDF icon.

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27 February 2018

Developing a European 'big science market' for advanced research infrastructures and industry

The Big Science Business Forum (BSBF) 2018 has brought together 'big science' organizations such as CERN, EMBL, ESA, ESO, ESRF, ESS, European XFEL, F4E and ILL, with industrial companies for co-creating a 'big science market' worth EUR 12 billion. During the two-day forum, the big science organizations have presented their offers and investment plans to potential new business partners. This event is also intended to facilitate more structured and joint procurements for a strong industrial involvement in the European market.

In the context of establishing a European Action Plan for ensuring the sustainability of research Infrastructures, participants have also been presented the key recommendations from the European Commission's recently published Call For Action Report PDF icon.

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23 February 2018

New Pan European Research Infrastructure to support marine biology and ecology research

The European Commission has granted the status of European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) to the European Marine Biological Resource Centre (EMBRC), setting up a pan-European Consortium for marine biology and ecology research (EMBRC-ERIC).

Hosted by France and based in Paris, EMBRC-ERIC will provide a single access entry point to a comprehensive portfolio of services and research platforms, marine ecosystems, biological resources, E-infrastructure and metadata.

The services offered will include access to research platforms, biological resources and analytical data, joint research activities, access to marine material and genetic material, trainings for researchers and services to connect science with industry.

The preparatory phase of EMBRC received EU funding of EUR 975 520 from Horizon 2020 and EUR 3 879 421 from its predecessor, the 7th Framework Programme.

EMBRC-ERIC will boost the development of blue biotechnologies by supporting both fundamental and applied research for sustainable solutions in the food, health and environmental sectors. It will help answer fundamental questions regarding the health of oceanic ecosystems; support life-science breakthrough discoveries with the use of marine biological models; and continue long-term marine monitoring efforts.

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22 February 2018

Publication of ESFRI Scripta Volumes

Two new ESFRI Scripta Volumes have been recently published. They are dedicated to the outcomes of the ad hoc Working Groups on Long term sustainability of Research infrastructures (Vol. II) and on Innovation (Vol III)

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4 December 2017

Dedicated Information session for ESFRI RIs and ERICs on EOSC and long-term sustainability of Research Infrastructures

The European Commission organized a dedicated information session to clarify specific topics of the Horizon 2020 RI Work Programme calls, namely on the European Open Science Cloud and Long-term sustainability.

The event was held on the 27th November at the Auditorium Karel Van Miert.

The programme comprised 2 sessions:

  • Session 1 covered the EOSC Governance, national initiatives and interface, as well as the technical development
  • Session 2 focused on the long term sustainability of RIs and the Individual Support to ESFRI and other world-class research infrastructures

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20 November 2017

Horizon 2020 Work Programme 2018-2020 – part. 4. European Research Infrastructures (including e-Infrastructures) - Published

The Work Programme 2018-2020 for Research Infrastructures Part has been published.

6 calls and 15 topics are foreseen for the period 2018-2019. Further actions for 2020 are listed but not developed in details. The estimated total budget is more than EUR 1.200 million over the three years.

The calls will address:

  • The long term sustainability of pan European Research Infrastructures
  • The implementation of the European Open Science Cloud
  • The integration and opening of Research Infrastructures of European interest
  • The European data Infrastructure
  • The translation of Open Science into Open Innovation
  • The policy and international cooperation measures for Research infrastructures

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29 September 2017

RICH Information Day on RIs WP 2018-2020

Brussels, 30 November 2017

RICH, the network of National Contact Points for Research Infrastructures, in cooperation with the European Commission's Research and Innovation Directorate-General, will organize an Information Day on Thursday 30 November 2017 in Brussels to support the preparation of proposals.

The aim of the day will be to inform potential participants in the new Work Programme 2018/2020 and to offer some unique opportunities for networking.

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26 September 2017

Sustainable European Research Infrastructures – A call for action

Cover

The European Commission has launched a debate with EU Member States on establishing a European action plan that will make European Research Infrastructures sustainable in the long term.

Discussions will be based on a document PDF icon published today by the Commission, outlining key issues the different stakeholders will need to address in the action plan.

These include:

  • Synchronizing national research infrastructures roadmaps and their budgets
  • Making Research Infrastructures available more broadly by establishing cross-border access schemes
  • Launching large-scale pilots involving Research Infrastructures and industry
  • Exploiting the data produced by European Research Infrastructures in a more strategic way
  • Putting in place effective governance mechanisms at European level
  • Finding ways to increasingly and more efficiently use the European Structural Investment Funds, the European Fund for Strategic Investments, and the InnovFin – EU Finance for Innovators programme for developing Research Infrastructures
  • Promoting the international outreach of Research Infrastructures and using them as flagships for European science policy

The upcoming Bulgarian EU Presidency will facilitate discussions by organizing a high-level conference on Research Infrastructures on 22 and 23 March 2018. During the conference, participants will adopt a joint declaration, which should lead to the identification of priority actions to be endorsed at the Competitiveness Council of the EU in May 2018.

Once finalised, the action plan on sustainable European Research Infrastructures will also feed into the discussions about the EU's post-2020 long-term budget, including the successor of Horizon 2020, the current EU research and innovation funding programme.

7 September 2017

LEAPS Launch Conference, Making the Invisible Visible!

13 November 2017, Brussels

Accelerator based light sources have made fantastic contribution to science and innovation in Europe. That's why over the past decades 15 such synchrotron or free electron laser facilities have been built across the EU and its associated members. As Europe is growing together to face the challenges of our common future these facilities are intensifying their collaboration. LEAPS, the League of European Accelerator-based Photon Sources, is a new strategic consortium of the Synchrotron Radiation and Free Electron Laser user facilities in Europe. Its primary goal is to actively and constructively ensure and promote the quality and impact of the fundamental, applied and industrial research carried out at their respective facility to the greater benefit of European science and society.

At the LEAPS Launch event of 13 November 2017 in Brussels, representatives from the ministries and funding agencies will explain how national strategies support EU-wide collaboration. The event is structured in three panel discussions illuminating excellence in science, challenges in innovation, and opportunities for integration.

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20 July 2017

EURAXESS launches Research Infrastructures brand new feature

EURAXESS - Researchers in Motion is a unique pan-European initiative delivering information and support services to professional researchers. Backed by the European Union and its Member States, it supports researcher mobility and career development, while enhancing scientific collaboration between Europe and the world.

EURAXESS has been implemented with a new feature, which lets universities, research institutions and businesses highlight if the research job/hosting opportunity they wish to advertise at the portal, is related to a position/project within a Research Infrastructure.

EURAXESS services requires users to have an organization profile. It allows to enter in the "MY EURAXESS" private area where it is possible to highlight that a research job opportunity is related to a position within a Research Infrastructure, or that a research hosting opportunity is related to a project within a Research Infrastructure.

Approved offers become visible at the Jobs Search page or Hosting Search page where they can be filtered by "Research Infrastructures" as well as other additional criteria.

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18 July 2017

Commission hands over ERIC Plate for a new European research infrastructure for structural biology hosted by the UK

On 18 July 2017, Patrick Child, Deputy Director-General of the European Commission's Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, handed over the INSTRUCT-ERIC Plate to Jo Johnson, Minister of State of the United Kingdom responsible for universities, science, research and innovation. The official handover followed the granting of the legal status of European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) to INSTRUCT, a European research infrastructure hosted by the UK, on 4 July 2017.

INSTRUCT-ERIC will provide high-quality working conditions for researchers in structural biology. Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Israel, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal and Slovakia are also members of INSTRUCT-ERIC, while Spain, Greece and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) are currently observers. INSTRUCT-ERIC is the seventeenth ERIC established by the European Commission and the second ERIC after the European Social Survey hosted by the UK. The European Union has supported INSTRUCT with around €8.5 million. The ERIC status provides the facilities with many administrative advantages enjoyed by international organisations and therefore helps to successfully implement the infrastructure projects.

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5 July 2017

ESFRI Annual Report 2016

On the 21st of June in Krakow, Poland, ESFRI adopted its 2016 Activity Report. The document summarises all the activities of the Forum, including the publication of the ESFRI Roadmap 2016 and the results of analytical work related to links between research infrastructures and industry, coordination of funding of e-Infrastructures and the evolution of neutron sources in Europe. The Report also gives a comprehensive account of all ESFRI meetings and provides an overview of the different ESFRI bodies and working groups.

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28 June 2017

First Call for World-Wide Open Access to European Aquatic Mesocosm Facilities in 2018

AQUACOSM now opens its first Transnational Access Program to more than 37 aquatic mesocosm facilities throughout Europe, with aquatic ecosystems ranging from freshwater to estuarine and marine systems, covering the sub-Arctic to the Mediterranean and beyond, from mountains to lowlands, and spanning from ultra-oligotrophic to hyper-eutrophic conditions.

Between Jan 2018 and Dec 2020 AQUACOSM will offer more than 11500 person-days of Transnational Access (TA). This first application deadline is on 15 Sept 2017 before 24:00 CET.

To foster effective international collaborations, an Open Project Development Workshop will be held Tuesday 4 July 2017 from 18:30 at the 10 European Freshwater Symposium

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9 June 2017

Two ERICs -CESSDA ERIC and ECCSEL ERIC- hosted by Norway established today by Commission Decision

It is the first time that ERICs will be hosted by an associated country.

Today the Commission established the Consortium of European Social Science Data Archives (CESSDA ERIC) and the European Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage Laboratory (ECCSEL ERIC) with statutory seats in Bergen and Trondheim respectively.

CESSDA ERIC aims at providing a distributed and sustainable research infrastructure enabling the research community to conduct high-quality research in the social sciences contributing to the production of effective solutions to the major challenges facing society today and to facilitate teaching and learning. The Commission has supported CESSDA and CESSDA related activities under FP-7 and H2020 for an amount of about 18 Mln EUR. CESSDA entered the ESFRI Roadmap in 2006.

ECCSEL ERIC aims at establishing a world-class distributed research infrastructure to facilitate superior experimental research on new and improved CO2 capture, transport and storage techniques (CCS). ECCSEL ERIC has its statutory seat in Trondheim. The Commission has supported ECCSEL under FP-7 and H2020 for an amount of about 6 Mln EUR. ECCSEL entered the ESFRI Roadmap in 2008.

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31 May 2017

Symposium "Fostering the Innovation Potential of Research Infrastructures"

Presentations now available

The symposium was organized by the RICH Project (network of National Contact Points for H2020-Research Infrastructures programme) on 8 May 2017, in Lisbon. The objectives of the symposium were to showcase approaches to innovation taken by Research Infrastructures and projects in all scientific domains, as well as to provide a floor for the discussion of policies and incentives for innovation.

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16 May 2017

EU-backed major research facility promotes peace in the Middle East

Strongly supported by European Union funding, the SESAME synchrotron, the first major international research infrastructure in the Middle East, started operating today in Allan, Jordan.

Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation said: "SESAME is the best evidence that science diplomacy is a driver of scientific and technological excellence and a powerful tool for improving relations across countries, regions and cultures promoting peace and stability in the region. As a universal language, science opens channels of communication and builds trust. I'm proud to see that the EU is supporting this important flagship of science diplomacy."

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2 May 2017

Fostering the Innovation Potential of Research Infrastructures

Symposium, 8 May, Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian (FCG), Lisbon, Portugal

On behalf of the RICH Project, the Horizon 2020 network of Research Infrastructures (RI) National Contact Points (NCPs), in close collaboration with the European Commission (DG RTD), organizes the upcoming symposium ¨Fostering the Innovation Potential of Research Infrastructures¨, that will take place on May 8th at the Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian (FCG) in Lisbon.

The Symposium will consist on a Keynote lecture, followed by three Plenary Sessions, devoted to (1) Innovation at the RI level and at the project level, (2) Policy tools and Instruments, and (3) Innovation in Action – Clusters and spin-offs, followed by a Round Table named (1) Fostering the Innovation Potential of RIs, all related to the Research Infrastructures´ landscape.

The Symposium´s main objective is to provide a platform for effective, high-level interaction between both Research infrastructures projects and/or national RIs and industry. Even though the potential of RIs to foster innovation is clearly recognized – with industry as supplier or as user of the different RIs – it is still underexplored.

The event is mainly addressed at industry representatives, Research Infrastructures NCPs, Research Infrastructures scientific leaders and managers, ESFRI actors, and technology transfer and communication officers.

The event will be Live streamed.

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28 April 2017

Executive Masters in Management of Research Infrastructure

The Research Infrastructure grant RItrain, funded under Horizon 2020, together with the University of Milano-Bicocca launched a unique international management development programme. This management development programme is primarily aimed at current Research Infrastructures managers and leaders who wish to extend their competencies by engaging with peers from other countries. The programme covers competencies required to meet the needs of Research Infrastructures in the planning, construction and operation phases. RItrain will support the registration fees for the applicants to the first iteration of this Master course.

Call for applications start date: 20 April 2017
Deadline for application: 31 May 2017
Admission results: June 2017
Programme start date: 20 September 2017

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23 March 2017

Long term sustainability of Research Infrastructures, Exploring RI's full potential

The report of the Stakeholders Workshop held in Brussels on 25 November 2016 has been published

The objective of the workshop was to present and discuss with experts/ stakeholders the main challenges identified in the online Stakeholder consultation on Research Infrastructures long term sustainability launched in December 2015 and to collect suggestions and comments for the development of an Action Plan on Research Infrastructures long term sustainability approach.

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21 March 2017

ELIXIR (European life-science infrastructure for biological information) Europe conference: Core Resources for a Data Economy

11 May 2017, Brussels, Belgium

The Core Resources for a Data Economy Conference brings together funders, policy-makers and researchers in industry and academia to discuss the importance of data infrastructures for innovation and growth. It will present ELIXIR's work to develop indicators for Core Data Resources, showcase the impact of databases on science and the economy and discuss some of the challenges and solutions to the sustainability of these crucial resources.

Keynotes from:

  • Philippe Froissard, DG Research and Innovation, European Commission
  • Celina Ramjoue, DG CNNCT, European Commission
  • Pierre Meulien, Executive Director, Innovative Medicines Initiative

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31 January 2017

Final Conference of the EUROFLEETS2 project

The Final Conference of the EUROFLEETS2 project (New operational steps towards an alliance of European research fleets) will take place at the Auditorium of the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, in Brussels, on the 31st of January 2017.

This event will present the successes and main results of the EUROFLEETS2 and EUROFLEETS FP7 projects over the last 8 years in consolidating the links between European research fleets, building up transnational access within European research vessels based on scientific excellence, training the next generation of young scientists and making steps towards further harmonisation and optimisation in development and use of marine research infrastructures.

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30 January 2017

Outcomes of the Workshop "Future perspectives for RIs Advanced Communities"

The outcomes of the Workshop that was held on 14 November 2016 in Brussels are now available The Workshop aimed at identifying the needs and expectations of the Research Infrastructures communities that have been supported with three or more integrating activities under Horizon 2020 or earlier programmes and have, therefore, reached a significant level of integration.

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27 January 2017

Holocaust research "more important than ever"

Christian Ehler, member of the European Parliament together with Jerzy Buzek MEP, former prime minister of Poland, hosted the event on the European Holocaust Research Infrastructure (EHRI), on the 25 January at the European Parliament to commemorate the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp.

The event was designed to showcase the EHRI work,, an EU-funded research infrastructure project set up in 2010 to build a suite of digital resources that pull together information from and about Europe’s various Holocaust archives. It includes a public-facing blog, a database for researchers and a free online course for students.

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27 January 2017

EMSO ERIC – Launch event

Rome, Italy

EMSO ERIC, the European Multidisciplinary Seafloor and water column Observatory, is officially launched with a press event on 27 January 2017 at the Foreign Press Association in Rome.

Among the speakers: Fulvio Esposito (from the Italian Ministry for Education, University and Research), Robert Jan Smits (Director General for Research and Innovation at the European Commission), Carlo Doglioni (president of INGV), Paolo Favali (EMSO spokesperson), Richard Lampitt (Chair of EMSO-ERIC Assembly of Members).

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26 January 2017

RITRAIN, Research Infrastructure Training Programme

The RItrain project is organising staff exchange programme visits as part of the mission to share management expertise among European Research Infrastructures. The first 3 calls of this year focussed on:

    Stakeholder Management and Community Building, (deadline for submission: 31 January 2017)

    Strategic Vision, Governance and Business Development (deadline for submission: 5 March 2017)

    Service Provision (deadline for submission: 26 February 2017)

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17 January 2017

ESFRI Roadmap 2018 Info Day

Malaga Spain

Following the official presentation of the ESFRI Roadmap 2018 update process at ICRI2016 in Cape Town, ESFRI organizes an Information Day on 17 January 2017 in Malaga, with the aim to provide a complete description of the requirements, the procedure and the methodology of selection of proposals and thus facilitate new submissions by ESFRI Delegations and EIROforum Members. The Roadmap Landscape Analysis of Research Infrastructures will also be presented along with information on its ongoing update process.

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25 November 2016

Long term sustainability of Research Infrastructures, Exploring RI's full potential

Stakeholders Workshop, Brussels

The objective of the workshop is to present and discuss with experts/ stakeholders the main challenges identified in the online Stakeholder consultation on Research Infrastructures long term sustainability launched in December 2015 and to collect suggestions and comments for the development of an Action Plan on Research Infrastructures long term sustainability approach.

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3 October 2016

ICRI 2016

Cape Town, South Africa

The International Conferences on Research Infrastructures (ICRI) are a well established international forum encouraging global cooperation and providing a unique opportunity to share views on matters of international relevance in the Research Infrastructures' domain.

Building on the conclusions of previous ICRIs and the ongoing debates on Research Infrastructures in international fora such as the Group of Senior Officials (GSO) and the OECD-Global Science Forum (GSF), a more structured approach to collaboration on global Research Infrastructures will be discussed with the international community, underlining the strategic importance of Research Infrastructures and exploring their role as a tool for Science Diplomacy.

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30 September 2016

EMSO: New European research infrastructure to provide key data on the sea and climate change

The European Commission granted today the legal status of European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) to the European Multidisciplinary Seafloor and Water Column Observatory (EMSO), a network of observatory nodes installed in European seas providing key data on marine ecosystems, natural hazards and climate change.

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