Evolving Paradigms: the Next Horizon in RI Integration and Innovation


The cross-disciplinary and cross-domain challenges within the Research Infrastructures landscape are integral to addressing the complexities of crisis management, Horizon Europe missions, and the green and digital transition. Inter-, multi-, and transdisciplinarity are recognised as crucial, yet the existing domain-oriented structure poses challenges for fostering collaboration across diverse RIs. Synergies between domains should be enhanced, especially by involving RIs from the SSH domain in environmental considerations.

Networking and clustering of RI access and services should be prioritised to facilitate seamless cooperation, supporting research communities across all domains. This is essential to harness the collective strength of RIs in addressing societal challenges, HEU missions, and the green and digital transition.

Furthermore, a layer of complexity and opportunity is added by the integration of RIs with advanced technologies and deep tech expertise. This integration aims to accelerate innovation and to engage citizens in new technologies, such as AI and Machine Learning, as well as big data, communications and networks, cybersecurity, data protection, and virtual reality. AI tools are increasingly applied in all domains, demanding a wider, informed discussion about the potential ethical implications and societal values embedded in these technologies.

The challenges posed by the evolving landscape, including interdisciplinary demands and the integration of AI, underscore the necessity for further fostering cross-domain synergy and collaborative approaches within the ESFRI RIs ecosystem. 

The transformation of RIs towards interdisciplinary collaboration and the integration of AI is crucial for positioning RIs as effective contributors to crisis management, HEU missions, and the broader green and digital transition, aligning with the evolving needs of society.