Press Release

Leading European Research Organisations Join Forces in EIROFORUM

21 May 2001

Since the early 1950s, a number of powerful research infrastructures and laboratories which are used by an extensive network of scientists have been developed and deployed within Europe by European Intergovernmental Research Organisations (EIRO). Together, they represent European spearheads in some of the most crucial basic and applied research fields. Seven of these organisations have set up a co-ordination and collaboration group (EIROFORUM) with their top executives (Directors General or equivalent) as members. They include CERN (particle physics), EMBL (molecular biology), ESA (space activities), ESO (astronomy and astrophysics), ESRF (synchrotron radiation), ILL (neutron source) and EFDA (fusion).

A primary goal of EIROFORUM [1] is to play an active and constructive role in promoting the quality and impact of European Research. In particular, the group will be a basis for effective, high-level inter-organisational interaction and co-ordination. It will mobilise its substantial combined expertise in basic research and in the management of large international projects for the benefit of European research and development. This will be possible by exploiting the existing intimate links between the member organisations and their respective European research communities.

According to the EIROFORUM Charter, the main aims of the collaboration are to:

  1. Encourage and facilitate discussions among its members on issues of common interest, which are relevant to research and development.
  2. Maximise the scientific return and optimise the use of resources by sharing relevant developments and results, whenever feasible.
  3. Co-ordinate the education and outreach activities of the organisations, including technology transfer and public understanding.
  4. Take an active part, in collaboration with other European scientific organisations, in taking a forward-look at promising and/or developing research directions and priorities, in particular in relation to new large-scale research infrastructures.
  5. Simplify high-level interactions with the European Commission (EC) and enable an effective response to specific requests for expert advice in the areas covered by the member organisations.
  6. Provide co-ordinated representation to the outside world including the general public, national governments, non-European countries etc.

The next meeting of EIROFORUM will be held in Brussels (Belgium) on May 21-22, 2001. It will provide an opportunity for the members to discuss recent developments and, in particular, to meet with the European Commissioner for Research, Philippe Busquin.

The current EIROFORUM chairperson is Dr. Catherine Cesarsky (ESO).

For more details, please contact the respective PR Departments of the organisations (addresses below), or the EIROFORUM Secretariat (Dr. P. Quinn, ESO, D-85748 Garching, Germany; Tel.: +49-89-32006506; Fax.: +49-89-3202362; Email:


[1] This Press Release is issued jointly by the seven organisations that are represented in EIROFORUM:

  • European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN)
  • European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL)
  • European Space Agency (ESA)
  • European Southern Observatory (ESO)
  • European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF)
  • Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL)
  • European Fusion Development Agreement (EFDA)

More information


Dr. Catherine Cesarsky (Chair)
European Southern Observatory (ESO)

Prof. Dr. Dirk Dubbers
Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL)

Prof. Fotis C. Kafatos
European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL)

Prof. Luciano Maiani
European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN)

Dr. Jerome Pamela
European Fusion Development Agreement (JET-EFDA)

Dr. Antonio Rodotà
European Space Agency (ESA)

Prof. William G. Stirling
European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF)


Useful links:


Dr. Franco Bonacina
ESA Head Office, 8-10 Mario Nikis
Paris, France
Tel: +33 1 5369 7155

Mr Neil Calder
Head of Press and Publications - CERN
Geneva, Switzerland
Tel: +41-22-767-4101

Mr Christopher Carpenter (on behalf of JET)
D3 Culham Science Centre - Abingdon - Oxfordshire OX14 3DB, UK
Tel: +44 1235 464190

Mr Federico R. Casci
EFDA - Max-Planck-Institut für Plasmaphysik - Boltzmannstr. 2
Garching, Germany
Tel: +49 89 3299 4237

Ms Dominique Cornuéjols
Head of Communications ESRF
Grenoble, France
Tel: +33 4 76 88 20 25

Mr Russ Hodge
Meyerhofstr. 1 - Heidelberg, Germany
Tel: +49 6221 387252

Ms Anne Le Noel
6, rue Jules Horowitz BP 156 F-38042 Grenoble Cedex 9, France
Tel: +33 4 76 20 71 01

Dr Richard West
Garching, Germany
Tel: +49 89 32006 276

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About the Release

Release No.:eso0121
Legacy ID:PR 12/01
Type:Unspecified : People