Sustainable European Research Infrastructures – A call for action

Audience: Private
Date: 2017-10-09

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Following on from the May 2016 Competitiveness Council Conclusions inviting the European Commission to develop a long-term sustainability Action Plan, in close cooperation with ESFRI (European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures) and other relevant stakeholders, the Commission launched a stakeholder consultation process that identified the main elements for an Action Plan and specific measures to be adopted by the different actors.

The results of the consultation fed into the document on Long-term sustainability of Research Infrastructures that the Commission has now published, and which puts forward the following challenges and also potential actions that the different stakeholders will need to address in the action plan:

  • 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 document will be the basis for the discussions on the prioritization of the elements of the Action Pan during the upcoming Bulgarian and Austrian Presidencies.

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.

The document is available here.