This is the first Spaniard to preside over the largest body of major European scientific infrastructures

Twenty years ago, the European Council established the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) and now, for the first time, A Spaniard took the chair. The institution has appointed José Luis Martínez, a research professor at the CSIC-dependent Institute of Materials Science of Madrid (ICMM), as the eighth president of this committee, a position he will assume in January 2024 and which he will hold for two years.

“I see ESFRI as a coordination mechanism for large research infrastructures that has the European Commission as ‘cement’.” it has worked great so far“explained Martínez after his appointment. The researcher assures that he is facing an “intense time” whose biggest challenge will be to carry out one new roadmap for major European scientific institutions.

“This means reviewing the facilities it contains, monitoring their performance and, on the other hand, evaluating new proposals for scientific facilities. Obviously the President of the ESFRI Committee has to do this.” Manage the whole processtogether with all delegates from Member States and the European Commission,” explains Martínez, who has been given a newly created secretariat to assist in this task.

Political coordination is the key to introducing new infrastructure

In addition, for Martínez, the consolidation of the integration into the European Research Area (ERA) and the improvement of a central goal Coordination between the large scientific infrastructures. “Policy coordination between states is important to set up new entities, but there is a second part, when the entity already exists and each one is an independent entity, where I think ESFRI can put more effort into coordinating improve.” “Not that there isn’t, but It can be improved and that is very important in times of crisis.“, Add to.

“I am absolutely confident that his experience, knowledge and dedication will enable José Luis to continue improving ESFRI.”

Before being appointed President of the Forum, Martínez held various leadership, coordination and management positions in various national and international organizations. He has been associated with ESFRI since 2013. In fact, he was a member of the Executive Council (2013–2013). 2016) and was Director of the Strategic Working Group of ESFRI Physics and Engineering (2016 – 2021), the has won the unanimous trust of the forum.

At least that is what ESFRI President Jana Kolar herself has assured: “I have full confidence that experience, knowledge of research infrastructures and commitment, combined with the support of a well-connected community, will allow José Luis to further improve ESFRI“.

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For her part, Anna Panagopoulou, Director for ERA and Innovation at the European Commission congratulated Martínez and celebrated his “impressive record”. as a researcher, manager of large research infrastructures and member of the ESFRI delegation.” She took the opportunity to recall that during the next term, which will last from 2024 to 2025, ESFRI “must continue to integrate into the new ERA.” According to Panagopoulou himself, “this will be helpful.” not only promote scientific excellence and the creation of knowledgebut also to strengthen the role of research infrastructures as actors in innovation and knowledge transfer.”

From CSIC to ESFRI: the experience of José Luis Martínez

Jose Luis Martinez is Research professor at the Institute of Materials Science (ICMM) of the Higher Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) in Madrid. He has extensive experience in large Research Infrastructures (RI) and has worked at Nagoya Institute of Technology (Japan), Brookhaven National Laboratory (New York, USA), Laue Langevin Institute (Grenoble, France) and ESS-Bilbao. as users and managers of various IRs.

Among other charges He was Deputy Director General for Research Projects at the Ministry of Science and Innovation of Spain (2004-2007), Deputy Director of the ILL (2007-2012) and Director General of ESS-Bilbao, responsible for the Spanish contribution in kind to the European Spallation Infrastructure (Lund, Sweden) and member of the Commission National d’Évaluation (CNE-2) of the French Parliament (Office Parlementaire d’Évaluation des Choix Scientifiques et Technologiques”, OPECST) since 2017.

ESFRI was established in 2002 by the European Council consisting of the member states of the EU and the European Commission The aim is to coordinate a joint strategy for scientific institutions and research infrastructures and, in particular, to develop a Europe-wide infrastructure roadmap.

Since then, ESFRI has grown into one strategic tool in setting policies and in facilitating multilateral initiatives leading to better development and exploitation of these research infrastructures at European and international level, so that Europe has the right research infrastructures duly available to remain at the forefront of knowledge creation.

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