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European Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) is a vital pillar of the European Research Area (ERA) as it is a strategic instrument to develop the scientific integration of Europe and to strengthen its international outreach. On December 07th, ESFRI presented the roadmap 2021 Update on Large Scale Research Infrastructures in an online event. This Roadmap identifies the European investment priorities and provides the directions for their further development, and looks into the future challenges of the Research Infrastructure policy. Furthermore, this document identifies the main features of the RIs landscape in Europe to implement an integrated and interconnected Research infrastructure eco-system as an important element of the ERA Policy Agenda. This document can be consulted here.

The coordinator of EU – LAC ResInfra, Inmaculada Figueroa, moderated the panel on “Research infrastructure is a driver in the International cooperation”. Inmaculada remarked the importance of this topic, which is an essential tool to face the current challenges such as climate change, large scale natural events, and the last pandemic experienced recently.

This panel counted on the participation of three experts in different areas related to research infrastructures and international cooperation. The first speaker was Philip Diamond, SKAO Observatory Director. He started presenting the SKAO project, a global network which supports the construction of high-level radio astronomical observatories. Nicolas Dromei from MESFRI, talked about research infrastructures, raised the global challenge associated with the complexity these have. Werner Kutch, General Director of ICOS (Integrated Carbon Observation System), presented this project and how it is in charge of in-situ greenhouse gas and carbon cycle measurements.

The conclusions from the panel remarked the vital importance of international support for the generation of research infrastructures where ESFRI has been able to set an agenda. Furthermore, it was stressed the relevance of ESFRI Roadmap 2021 as a demonstration of the high merit of and potential for European collaboration in developing visions and sustainable perspectives for an interoperable Research Infrastructure ecosystem as a key asset of Europe.

In other sessions topics such as RIs in the ERA Policy Agenda were discussed and New ESFRI projects were presented.

The event recording can be accessed here:  https://www.youtube.com/c/ESFRI-EU