International Research Network (IRN)

An international cooperation tool shared by the CNRS, dedicated to strengthening research partnerships.


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1. What is an International Research Network?

The purpose of an International Research Network is to structure an international scientific community around a common theme or research infrastructure. It promotes the organization of international workshops and seminars, as well as thematic schools organized by network partners in France and abroad. It brings together, for a duration of five years, researchers from one or more French laboratories, including at least one from the CNRS, and several international partner laboratories.


2. Who are International Research Networkintended for?

International Research Networks are intended for personnel conducting research in a CNRS unit and their scientific partners in France and abroad.


3. How to propose an International Research Network?

Applications should be submitted to the CNRS scientific Institute in charge of the applicant’s unit. It is recommended that candidates contact the international relations correspondents within their institute as early as possible to find out the specific procedures for submitting a project. For interdisciplinary projects, the various Institutes concerned can be informed.


4. How are International Research Network evaluated?

Proposals for International Research Networks are evaluated by peer reviews within the CNRS scientific Institutes based on the following criteria: scientific value of the project, interest of the international collaboration, scientific quality and complementarity of teams, past relations, balance of participation in scientific activity, participation of young researchers, ethics, and financial justification.
Special attention will be given to the identification of targeted objectives relating to the expected impact beyond the scientific activity itself (for example, preparation of a joint response to calls for proposals, promotion of joint programming, insertion into multilateral networks, and organization of the activity around a research infrastructure).


5. What are the outlines of the institutional formalization of International Research Network?

Once selected, International Research Networks are the subject of institutional letters of commitment from the French and foreign institutions willing to support them, in particular by granting additional funds in accordance with the internal evaluation and selection procedures specific to each institution.


6. How are International Research Network financed?

In addition to the resources directly provided by the participating teams, International Research Networks receive funds earmarked explicitly by the CNRS for international mobility between the laboratories involved and for setting up international workshops and seminars, working meetings, and thematic schools organized by the partners, for a total amount comprised between €50,000-€75,000 over the duration of the project. Managed by the CNRS laboratory overseeing the International Research Network (lead laboratory), the CNRS funds are allocated by annual installments depending on the initial project, scientific assessments, and annual financial reports issued by the lead laboratory and members of the International Research Network.


More information and points of contact are available on the CNRS's international webpage


European Research and International Cooperation Department
CNRS-Campus Gérard Mégie
3, rue Michel-Ange 75794 Paris Cedex 16

See the original call for proposal on the CNRS website