Towards an European network for research

Reblogged from Science on the Net

On July 22nd, all the European Ministers for Research were in Milan to lay the foundation stone of the European Network for Research, an international coordination that will involve 800 amongst the largest research centres of excellence in Europe, such as CERN and the Elettra Synchrotron in Trieste. Aim of this network is to make Europe more united and thus more competitive on the world stage, starting from the recent decision of implementing 60 percent of the projects of the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) by the end of 2015. How? By establishing specific national plans within a European plan for scientific research.

Let’s take a step back. Actually, the idea of a European network is not that recent. It dates back more than ten years ago, precisely in 2002, when ESFRI was born to support a coherent approach to policy-making on research infrastructures in Europe and to facilitate multilateral initiatives, thus leading to the better use and development of research infrastructures at EU and international level. That was the moment when this new commitment for the construction of an international network of research facilities of excellence has started.

Moreover, ESFRI carried out substantial work on the prioritization of financial support to these projects through a one-time financial contribution for the priority projects and to financially support the other projects (preparation and implementation) identified by ESFRI. In other words, the aim is to identify the best research projects and invest funding in order to complete the 60 percent of them by the end of 2015.

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