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Research infrastructures services for a sustainable and resilient agriculture and agro-ecological transitions

This topic aims at integrating and providing trans-national and/or virtual access to a complementary and interdisciplinary research infrastructures services to support R&I in view of achieving a sustainable and resilient agriculture and support agro-ecological transitions, in line with the One-Health approach. This approach appears to be particularly relevant to provide evidence to restore biodiversity, increase efficiency in the use of resources and prevent future crises. Research infrastructures should integrate, customise and offer a wide range of services to support agricultural research also in relation with agroforestry, aquaculture, horticulture, husbandry and pastoralism, taking into account the value chain, social and behavioural aspects and possibly human and animal nutrition dimensions.

Appropriate links and complementarities will be ensured with Horizon Europe Missions, in particular the one on Soil health and food[[]], on Adaptation to climate change including societal transformation[[]] and with the relevant Horizon Europe partnerships identified in the Horizon Europe strategic plan, in particular the ones on “accelerating farming systems transitions: agroecology living labs and research infrastructures”, “animal health and welfare” and “agriculture of data[[]]”. Other major European or international initiatives relevant for the scope should be taken into account. Whenever appropriate, proposals should foster the use and deployment of global standards.

Proposals will support access provision to researchers as well as training for using the infrastructures, and activities to improve, customise and integrate the services the infrastructures provide, so as to facilitate and integrate the access procedures and to further develop the remote or virtual provision of services.

Proposals should adhere to the guidelines and principles of the European Charter for Access to Research Infrastructures[[]].

RIs services will include access to agricultural data, tools and models relevant for human, plants and animal health and wellbeing; tools for rapid and precise analysis of agronomic and husbandry practices’ performance and main threats on agriculture (i.e. emerging pests and diseases, climate change, including drought, soil health, pollution and contaminants, etc.); methods to assess socio-economic impact of moving to more sustainable and resilient agriculture including agroecological transition (e.g. quality and safe food, health and wellbeing of people, animals and plants, farm and rural resilience). RI services will also support the development of mitigation and adaptation strategies and policy frameworks for a more resilient and sustainable agriculture.

Data management (and related ethics issues), interoperability, as well as the connection of digital services (e.g. data services) to the European Open Science Cloud, should be addressed where relevant. Appropriate links and complementarities will be ensured with the relevant data spaces.

Proposals should make available to researchers the widest and most comprehensive portfolio of research infrastructures services which are relevant for the scope. To this extent, they should involve, as beneficiaries or as third parties, the necessary interdisciplinary set of research infrastructures of European interest[[A research infrastructure is of European interest when is able to attract users from EU or associated countries other than the country where the infrastructure is located. This includes ESFRI and ERIC infrastructures. ]] that provide such services. The inclusiveness of the proposal will be taken into account in the Excellence score. Proposals including only few of the research infrastructures services relevant to the scope will be scored lower.

Research infrastructures from third countries[[See the Eligibility conditions for this topic.]] may be involved when appropriate, in particular when they offer complementary or more advanced services than those available in Europe.

Proposals should include an outreach plan to actively advertise its services to targeted research communities and, if applicable, to relevant industries, including SMEs.

Proposals are expected to exploit synergies and to ensure complementarity and coherence with other EU grants supporting access provision.

Proposals will include the list of services/installations[[“Installation” means a part or a service of a research infrastructure that can be used independently from the rest. A research infrastructure consists of one or more installations.]] opened by research infrastructures for trans-national or virtual access and the amounts of units of access made available for users. Further conditions and requirements relating to access provisions that applicants should fulfil when drafting a proposal are given in the “Specific features for Research Infrastructures” section of this Work Programme. Compliance with these provisions will be taken into account during evaluation. In this topic the integration of the gender dimension (sex and gender analysis) in research and innovation content is not a mandatory requirement.