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Policy measures for research infrastructures

Specific challenge: In the context of the recent communication for a reinforced ERA partnership for excellence and growth[1] and the commitments of the Innovation Union flagship initiative[2], the focus of this action is related to the effective investment and use of research infrastructures.

Scope: Proposals will address one of the following areas:

         Support partnerships between relevant policy makers, funding bodies or advisory groups such as ESFRI and e-IRG; support cooperation and exchange of good practises between managers of research infrastructures and stakeholder networks; support survey, monitoring and assessment of the implementation and operation of research infrastructures with a view to provide advice and guidance to policy makers. Particular attention should be paid to the exchange of good practices between ESFRI projects and other world class research infrastructures as well as to the development of support actions underpinning the European strategy on research infrastructures. The proposals will build on the past experience and achievements gained in Seventh Framework Programme projects such as CoPoRi (Communication and Policy development for Research infrastructures).

           Support the development of a comprehensive database targeted at policy-makers on research infrastructures of more than national relevance in Europe. The database should be useable as a tool to support the development of a European strategy on research infrastructures. As such, the set of information to be collected should be agreed and validated by the Member States. The proposers should develop and update a portal where detailed information on the research infrastructures will be made available. The proposers should also carry out a comparative analysis of the research infrastructures landscape between Europe and strategic third country partners such as USA, Canada, Australia and the BRICS countries. The proposal should build on the experience gained in the Seventh Framework Programme MERIL (Mapping of European Research Infrastructure Landscape) project.

The Commission expects to fund up to one proposal for each area to avoid duplication of efforts.

Expected impact:  This activity will:

         Strengthen the development of a consistent and dynamic European Research Area policy for research infrastructures;

         Facilitate the exchange of experiences and good practices between the national and/or regional policies and programmes;

         Enhance partnerships between policy makers and funding bodies and promote the development of appropriate monitoring tools for decision making;

         Support to ESFRI and thus contributing to the realisation of the Union flagship initiative on the implementation of 60% of the ESFRI projects by 2015;

         Contribute to the emergence of sustainable approaches, in the field of e-infrastructures, for the provision of cross-disciplinary research services;

         Encourage the pooling of resources between infrastructure operators at European level in order to face the grand challenges and to foster a culture of co-operation between them, spreading good practices and encouraging infrastructures to develop in complementary ways.

Type of action: Coordination and support actions

[1] COM (2012) 392 final

[2] COM(2010) 546 final