Relations with International Organizations

CERN maintains quality relationships with several other international organizations, in accordance with Article VIII of its Convention. These mutually beneficial relationships are primarily scientific and technical in nature and concern the following organizations:

International scientific organizations

CERN cooperates with a number of international scientific organizations, in particular through the EIROforum, a group of eight large European research organisations (CERN, ESA, ESO, EMBL, ESRF, EUROfusion, European XFEL, ILL).

In addition, CERN has signed specific bilateral cooperation agreements with ITER, ESA, ESO, IRENA, ICTP, and is a strong partner of the Middle East’s pioneering SESAME laboratory.

United Nations system

CERN has signed cooperation agreements with several UN organisations: UNESCO, UNITAR/ UNOSAT (hosted at CERN), ITU, WIPO, WMO, WHO and UNOG. Notable areas of cooperation include the promotion of joint initiatives in the area of science, technology and innovation, the management of complex IT systems, or data preservation. CERN is also linked to IPU by a memorandum of cooperation.

In 2012, the member states of the United Nations formally recognised the positive role of CERN in the international community and its contribution to the resolution of global issues by adopting a resolution granting CERN observer status at the United Nations General Assembly.

Sustainable Development Goals

CERN contributes de facto to some of the Sustainable Development Goals, the UN roadmap for development for the years 2015-2030. These goals are of particular relevance in CERN action and impact on society.

European Union

CERN has a long-standing cooperation with the European Commission along three main axes:

  1. the implementation of the European Research Area - policy level relations within the framework of the CERN-EC MoU in areas such as research and e-infrastructures, international cooperation, careers and mobility of researchers, Open Access etc.
  2. the participation in the EU Framework Programmes for Research and Technological development - working level relations with the EC Directorates-General RTD, CNECT and EAC.
  3. collaboration with the Joint Research Centre of the EC in a number of areas of mutual interest and benefit, such as knowledge and technology transfer, medical isotopes, neutron and big data.


Cooperation with the EU is coordinated by the CERN EU Projects Office.

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