The creation of EMSO Research Infrastructure is currently being supported by the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). The Research Infrastructure programme (implemented through the Capacities section of FP7) is presently implementing Preparatory Phase projects, for research infrastructures promoted by the ESFRI (European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures, http://ec.europa.eu/research/infrastructures/index_en.cfm?pg=esfri ) forum for new Research Infrastructure. The main goal of the Preparatory Phases is the creation of the organisational backbone of the Research Infrastructure. The main objective of the EMSO-Preparatory Phase (EMSO-PP, a 4-years project) is to establish the legal and governance framework for the infrastructure serving scientists and other stakeholders in Europe and outside Europe for long-term deep water observation and investigation. This framework will enable the deployment of the infrastructure and its long-term management. Moreover, it will promote the catalytic process and synergic effort at EC and national levels, coordinating and harmonising all available resources. A pan-European Core Legal Entity (CLE) will be designed and established. From the legal point of view, the main goal is to adopt the ERIC (Europan Research Infrastructure Consortium), as the most appropriate legal framework suitable for the management of EMSO.
Issues to be solved
The Preparatory Phase will solve critical issues that have not been addressed by other projects, for instance:
- The diversity of regional sites in terms of available legal frameworks;
- The harmonisation of funding (national, European, international, industrial) with respect to scope, objectives, and timing;
- The logistic constraints regarding available resources, and environmental protection;
- Possible technical bottle necks for which currently no off-the-shelf solution is available will be investigated.