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CNRS international toolkit

by CNRS@ASEAN - published on , updated on

CNRS is a global research player in every scientific discipline. While initial contacts are most often made by researchers themselves, reflecting the international nature of research, CNRS strives to structure and sustain these actions over time.

To this end, it relies on a range of tools, aiming at developing long-term collaboration

  • International programs for scientific cooperation (PICS) fund mobility between teams that have already established links through joint publications or student training programs.
  • International associated laboratories (LIA) lay the bases of cooperation around a joint project, mostly between one or several French teams and a main partner abroad. They sometimes foreshadow the creation of an International Joint Unit.
  • International research networks (GDRI) allow teams from two or more countries to collaborate on a joint scientific project.
  • International joint units (UMI) which are full-fledged joint laboratories, and have the same status as CNRS joint research units (UMR) in France. These UMIs are most often backed by one or several French laboratories, making up a “mirror UMI”. Moreover, CNRS is a partner of the French Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs in 26 joint units - French institutes abroad (UMIFRE).


CNRS is also working on adding French extensions to the existing UMIs. Based in French university campuses, they would host students and researchers from our foreign partners. This type of structure should encourage balanced exchanges between French researchers and their foreign collaborators. Furthermore, CNRS promotes the emergence of scientific collaboration clusters by establishing links between various CNRS structures located in the same country or region.

In order to support research communities in developing international partnerships and help them meet their scientific objectives, CNRS wishes to consolidate its network of partners – embassies, universities, or other higher education institutions – by giving them access to its infrastructures. In connection with French embassies’ scientific and technological services, the 8 CNRS offices abroad (Beijing, Brussels, New-Delhi, Pretoria, Rio de Janeiro, Singapore, Tokyo, Washington) could become real hubs for French research.

Source: CNRS