Science at the service of Europe

Research infrastructures

Quality research needs top-level infrastructures

Top-class scientific and technological development depends on its instruments, installations and facilities to carry out basic and applied research and to attract young people to science.

EU funding in 2010
€ 217.74 million

See Projects


a view from the sky of a research centre

The existence of recognised world-level infrastructures enables Europe to maintain a strong presence in the international research market. DG Research and Innovation supports the development of a European approach and the operation and enhancement of existing infrastructures, with a budget of about €1.7 billion.

In 2010, funding concentrated mainly on the development of integrated networks of existing research infrastructures. As for new ones, the European Commission continued its specific support to projects identified by the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) to help catalyse national efforts, since no single Member State has the resources to create the new large-scale infrastructures needed to compete at international level. At the end of 2010, 12 projects identified by ESFRI had effectively started, although some details needed to be finalised. In October 2010, the Commission received the first application to establish a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) from the SHARE ESFRI project (data infrastructure for empiric economic and social science analysis of ongoing changes due to population ageing).