In late 2019, the NanoworldMaps consortium submitted a proposal for an EU funded infrastructure design study (call H2020-INFRADEV-2019-3). The concept involved an international network of several multiple-beam scanning electron microscope facilities, each supported locally by complementary sample preparation and imaging instrumentation appropriate to specific application areas, as well as central hubs for management, data-archiving and software support. Although scoring well above the quality threshold in all evaluation categories, the proposal was unfortunately not funded.