Strong investment in research and innovation is needed to address pressing societal challenges such as climate change, health, an ageing population, or the move towards a resource efficient society.
Research Infrastructures play a vital role in addressing these challenges. However, it is essential to optimise the use of resources for increasingly expensive facilities, to overcome the fragmented infrastructure spending not only across Europe but at a more global scale, and to join forces to address these challenges.
Some research facilities, particularly in physics or astronomy, are so large, complex or expensive that they require international cooperation for their construction and operation. Others are naturally global in scope as they respond to global challenges and/or require the combined skills, data and efforts of the world's best scientists. Some examples from the European Roadmap are ICOS: Integrated Carbon Observation System; LIFEWATCH: protection, management and sustainable use of biodiversity; SKA: Square Kilometre Array, the next generation radio telescope.
Developing global research infrastructures and reinforcing cooperation of EU research infrastructures at international level are parts of the key commitments of the Innovation Union.
Several discussions already took place on the efficient planning, design, construction and operation of global infrastructures. It is clear that this requires not only a sharing of costs, but also the sharing of knowledge.
The Carnegie Group of G8 + 05 Science Advisers recognised the potential for cooperation on issues related to global research infrastructures. They established a Group of Senior Officials (GSO) on Global Research Infrastructures to reach a common understanding on matters such as governance, funding and management of large-scale research infrastructures.Read more
Copenhagen, 21-23 March 2012