The European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) was launched in 2002 with the objective to identify and address the scientific needs of research infrastructures (RI) in Europe for the next 10-20 years.
The mission of ESFRI is to support a coherent and strategy-led approach to policy-making on research infrastructures in Europe, and to facilitate multilateral initiatives leading to the better use and development of research infrastructures, at EU and international level. ESFRI brings together representatives of EU Member States and Associated Countries, appointed by ministers in charge of research, as well as a representative of the European Commission. ESFRI published its first roadmap in October 2006. This document identified 44 research infrastructure initiatives of pan-European interest from all scientific areas. INFRAFRONTIER was among the six research infrastructure initiatives in the Biological and Medical Sciences (BMS) that were included in the ESFRI Roadmap 2006. An updated version in 2008, added nine further projects. In 2010, a strategic report on research infrastructures and the updated ESFRI roadmap were published, in which 6 new projects were added. Meanwhile thirteen BMS projects are listed on the ESFRI roadmap 2010, documenting the increasing significance in this field. The next update of the current roadmap is scheduled for 2015.
On its tenth anniversary (October 2012), the main task of ESFRI is to support the current 48 projects of all areas to move towards the implementation phase. Committed to the Europe 2020 Flagship Initiative – Innovation Union, ESFRI supports and promotes its objectives, by developing work frames to facilitate the transfer of knowledge and competencies in a bidirectional way, from the research infrastructures to different stakeholders (e.g. scientists, industry and service providers).