European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI)
ESFRI was launched in April 2002 as a Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (RIs) which brings together representatives of EU Member States and Associated States, appointed by Ministers in charge of Research, and one representative of the European Commission. ESFRI’s objective is to identify and to address the scientific needs of research infrastructures in Europe for the next 10-20 years. Its mission is to support a coherent and strategy-led approach to policy-making on new and existing pan-European and global research infrastructures. ESFRI facilitates multilateral initiatives leading to the better use and development of research infrastructures, acting as an incubator for decision-making processes. As such, ESFRI contributes to the implementation of the Lisbon agenda by integrating national policies and providing Europe with the most up-to-date research infrastructures.
Fulfilling a request by the European Council of Research Ministers, an update of the ESFRI Roadmap was published in December 2008 (Update of the European Roadmap for Research Infrastructures). It presented new facilities tackling challenges in Environment, Energy and Health, while at the same time endorsing almost all the previous projects in the first edition, published in 2006 (European Roadmap for Research Infrastructures).
On 3rd May 2011, the ESFRI Strategy and Roadmap Report 2010 was published. The document is divided into two parts and contains the “work programme” of ESFRI for the coming years and also the European Roadmap illustrating 48 pan-European Research Infrastructures or major upgrades, corresponding to the needs of EU research communities in the next 10 to 20 years. The Roadmap was updated with six more projects, three in the area of Energy and three in the field of Biological and Medical Sciences. With the support of the European Ministers ten of the projects have entered the implementation phase by the end of 2010 while another sixteen proceed towards their implementation until the end of 2012.
The role of pan-European Research Infrastructures in the regions and their contributions to the European Research Area (ERA) are highlighted in the 2008 Report of the ESFRI Regional Issues Working Group.