ESFRI Roadmap

what is a research infrastructure?

Research infrastructures (RI) are facilities, resources and services that are used by the research communities to conduct research and foster innovation in their fields. They include: major scientific equipment (or sets of instruments), knowledge-based resources such as collections, archives and scientific data, e-infrastructures, such as data and computing systems and communication networks and any other tools that are essential to achive excellence in research and innovation.” – Article 2 (6) of the Regulation (EU) No 1291/2013 of 11 December 2013: ‘Establishing Horizon 2020 – the Framwork Programme for Research and Innovation (2014-2020).

Accordingly, RI are implemented along different organisational models, including central sources and laboratories for experiments and measurement sessions, coordination and management of geographically distributed observatories or laboratories, remotely accessible resources for computing, data bankds, physical sample repositories, surveys and longitudinal studies.

Single Site Research Infrastructure has a geographically localized central facility, whereas a Distributed Research Infrastructure has one central hub and is interlinked with many national nodes. By aspiring to attain a position on the ESFRI Roadmap, MEDem takes its initial stride towards becoming a recognized European research infrastructure.

What is ESFRI?

ESFRI, the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructure, is a strategic and advisory body that provides guidance and promotes the development of research infrastructures across Europe. ESFRI was established in 2002 by the European Union’s Council of Ministers. The main objective of ESFRI is to identify, prioritize, and support the development of pan-European research infrastructure of strategic importance. These infrastructures are selected based on their potential to significantly advance scientific research, address societal challenges, and drive innovation and economic growth.

ESFRI plays a crucial role in facilitating coordination and cooperation among European countries, research organizations, and stakeholders involved in the development and operation of research infrastructures. It promotes best practices, fosters knowledge exchange, and supports the long-term sustainability and interoperability of these infrastructures.

The ESFRI Roadmap

ESFRI has a key role in policy-making on research infrastructure in Europe. In particular, ESFRI contributes to the development of a strategic roadmap – the ESFRI Roadmap – as a comprehensive document that identifies and describes the most promising research infrastructures in Europe for the next 10-20 years. The roadmap is periodically updated to reflect emerging needs, technological advancements, and changes in the scientific landscape.

Inclusion on the ESFRI roadmap provides research infrastructures with increased visibility, recognition, and access to funding opportunities. It serves as a reference for national and European policymakers, funding agencies, and researchers in prioritizing investments and fostering collaboration across borders.

The ESFRI roadmap is a strategic document that charts the priority research infrastructures to be developed in Europe, fostering cross-disciplinary collaboration and driving scientific excellence. Fall 2024 marks the upcoming deadline for the next update of the ESFRI roadmap, and MEDem will be submitting its application as part of this process.

The European infrastructure for unlocking the true potential of data-driven  democracy research

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