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Research Infrastructures

UZH’s Research Infrastructures Score Highly

The University of Zurich achieved excellent results in the Swiss government’s 2023 Swiss Roadmap for Research Infrastructures, acting as the sponsoring institution for 5 out of 14 large-scale priority projects. The results confirm UZH’s standing as a driver of innovation.
Text by Stefan Stöcklin; English translation by Philip Isler


The ARES project (Airborne Research for the Earth System) develops high-precision instruments for Earth observation and is one of the prioritized research infrastructure projects. The picture shows the area east of Wangen an der Aare. (Image: ARES)

Every four years, the Swiss federal government publishes its Roadmap for Research Infrastructures. The infrastructures assessed in the report include large-scale research facilities such as particle accelerators as well as databases and specialized, state-of-the-art measuring instruments.

All of these projects require substantial funding, are best carried out in cooperation with others, and are available to all researchers in Switzerland. Along with other Swiss universities, UZH entered several of its projects in the 2023 roadmap – and has now received excellent scores for them.

The latest report published by the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) shows that five of the projects submitted by UZH as sponsoring institution (leading house) were awarded the highest level of excellence (A) (see box at the end of the article). The roadmap recommends that these projects be implemented with the highest priority.

Only 14 of all the projects submitted by Swiss universities achieved the highest score, with UZH ranking at the top of this (unofficial) list. “We’re delighted with these excellent results and consider them proof of the innovative potential of our research,” says Elisabeth Stark, Vice President Research at UZH.

Elisabeth Stark

We are expecting a substantial financial contribution so that these groundbreaking research infrastructures can be established successfully.

Elisabeth Stark
Vice President Research

Federal funding yet to be determined

The Roadmap for Research Infrastructures 2023 was compiled in view of the Swiss federal government’s upcoming research budget (2025 –2028 ERI Dispatch). The projects’ excellent evaluations increase the likelihood of federal government making substantial contributions to the costs of the infrastructures. However, no decisions on federal funding have yet been made.

The total costs of UZH’s five infrastructure projects are estimated at CHF 203 million over a period of four years. Generally, no more than half of the costs are borne by the federal government. “We are expecting a substantial financial contribution so that these groundbreaking research infrastructures can be established successfully,” says Elisabeth Stark. Together with three previous successful projects included in the roadmap, these new infrastructures have the potential to further strengthen UZH’s standing in the Swiss research landscape.

The OR-X infrastructure will allow young surgeons to practice their craft with the latest technologies in a real surgical environment. (Illustration: OR-X)