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A week of International Research Infrastructures discussions in Brno

Science Europe participates in an OECD Expert Group on ‘Very Large Research Infrastructures’ (VLRIs), and as a satellite meeting of the main International Conference on Research Infrastructures (ICRI 2022), the Expert Group met in Brno (Czech Republic) on 17 October to host a workshop dedicated to the topics of VLRI financing, impact, and long-term strategies. Speakers from Europe, South Korea, the USA, and Australia provided case studies on current and emerging models for the financing of VLRIs, and discussed how national interests can be harmonised on the basis of common grounds and solidarity in purpose for projects that are necessarily too large for any one national system. A full workshop report will be made available in the next month. 

Following this workshop, the International Conference on Research Infrastructures kicked off with 500 delegates from around the world discussing strategies to foster and improve cooperation on research infrastructures. The key themes of the workshop were: the socioeconomic benefits and social responsibility of research infrastructures, their role in and dependence on international cooperation, and ways of developing an integrated research infrastructure ecosystem. 

At the closing ceremony, the Brno Declaration on Fostering a Global Ecosystem of Research Infrastructures was announced. It highlights the essential role of research infrastructures in our global research sector. It is a call for action supported by the European Union Member States, the European Commission, and the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) to underpin the development of a thriving global Research Infrastructures ecosystem. The declaration will help to frame ongoing research infrastructure discussions ahead of the next global meeting in Australia in 2024. 

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