The ESS is an academically-driven social survey designed to chart and explain the interaction between Europe's changing institutions and the attitudes, beliefs and behaviour patterns of its diverse populations. In its fifth round, the survey covers more t han 30 countries and employs the most rigorous methodologies. The current ESS infrastructure is operated by the ESS Central Co-ordinating team (CCT), with seven partners from different countries in Europe. NSD is one of these partners and responsible for data processing, archiving and dissemination of the ESS data and metadata, and serves researchers world wide. This application concerns an upgrade of the existing ESS infrastructure as well as membership in the future ESS ERIC. The Norwegian participation in the ESS ERIC will comprise of activities in several domains. First of all, participation in the survey will involve national coordination and fieldwork. In addition, Norway is represented in the scientific coordination and operation of the ESS through NSD's role as partner in the CCT. Furthermore, in the ESS ERIC a third activity will be added, namely participation in the governance of the infrastructure through membership in the ESS ERIC consortium. The major upgrading activities will comprise of nat ional delivery of data and documentation in each round of the ESS survey. It will also include upgrading of the functionality of and access to the formidable body of data and metadata available to all from the ESS Data Archive, and thereby promote the tra nsition of ESS ERIC into an e-Infrastructure. Norwegian participation in the ESS is considered to be essential for further development of cross-national survey research and for promoting internationalisation of empirical social and behavioural science in Norway. Truly comparative data pertaining to the Norwegian society promotes Norwegian inclusion in comparative international studies as well as Norwegian participation in international research project.