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Joint Research Centre (JRC)
Joint Research Centre (JRC)
25 January 2018
Modified: 21 April 2018
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The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is the in-house scientific service provider of the European Commission. Its primary aim is to provide the scientific background for elaborating, executing and monitoring EU policies. In addition, the JRC is also the scientific and technological reference institution of the European Union.

It represents the joint interests of member states while being independent of national and market interests.

The Joint Research Centre has seven research institutions in five Western European cities: Ispra (Italy), Karlsruhe (Germany), Seville (Spain), Petten (the Netherlands) and Geel (Belgium) with the following distribution of fields:

  • Institute for Reference Materials and Measurements (IRMM) – Geel
  • Institute for the Protection and Security of the Citizen (IPSC) – Ispra
  • Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES) – Ispra
  • Institute for Health and Consumer Protection (IHCP) – Ispra
  • Institute for Prospective Technological Studies (IPTS) – Seville
  • Institute for Energy and Transport (IET) – Petten, Ispra
  • Institute for Transuranium Elements (ITU) – Karlsruhe, Ispra

The human resources of the JRC

Altogether around 2800 scientific and support staff work at JRC research institutions and at the Directorate-General.

The activities of the JRC (and its documents)

The two-year work programme of the JRC primarily covers the projects determined for the JRC. A significant part of these projects are “in-house” research projects.

The JRC regularly publishes its achievements in a newsletter which is available at the JRC website.

Institute for Reference Materials and Measurements (IRMM)

Research topics:

  • development and production of reference materials for certified laboratory measurements,
  • elaboration of analytical methods for the impact assessment of allergens and food additives, food safety,
  • environmental measurements and tests,
  • nuclear research and measurements.

Institute for the Protection and Security of the Citizen (IPSC)

Research topics:

  • disaster prevention, early warning systems,
  • fraud protection,
  • information and communications security,
  • transport safety,
  • TEMPEST laboratory (testing, certification),
  • IT technologies for protecting the budget from fraudulent use,
  • econometric studies supporting competitiveness and growth through financial services, macroeconomic modelling, economic cycle analysis, and the assessment and development of statistical indicators,
  • monitoring of remote sensors (e.g. cereal harvest).

Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES)

Research topics:

  • climate change impacts and adaptation (e.g. European Drought Observatory,)
  • chemical composition of the atmosphere,
  • emissions (e.g. filters for diesel vehicles),
  • water quality (Water Framework Directive),
  • vegetation, biodiversity, soil protection,
  • waste management,
  • renewable energy and storage.

Institute for Health and Consumer Protection (IHCP)

Research topics:

  • detection of genetically modified organisms in food and feed, potential health effects,
  • alternative testing methods intended to replace and reduce animal testing,
  • examination of the impact of stress factors and chemicals on health and the environment,
  • biosensors and biochips,
  • the health risks of nanoparticles.

Institute for Prospective Technological Studies (IPTS)

Research topics:

  • preparation of scenarios (greenhouse gas emissions, energy technologies, energy security, sustainable and environmentally friendly resource management),
  • analysis of national research structures and policies, researcher mobility,
  • research infrastructure development,
  • the impact of biotechnology discoveries on society and the economy,
  • the effects of the common agricultural policy reform.

Institute for Energy and Transport (IET)

Research topics:

  • nuclear security,
  • waste and biomass use for energy purposes,
  • alternative fuels (the effects of biofuel production, validation of performance/security),
  • renewable energy (overview, comparison, SETIS, solar panel tests),
  • sustainability of bioenergy,
  • fuel cells (reference laboratory testing),
  • energy conservation (development of guidelines),
  • technological modelling of energy systems,
  • photovoltaic solar power,
  • security of energy systems,
  • secure energy production.

Institute for Transuranium Elements (ITU)

Research topics:

  • nuclear medicine,
  • nuclear energy production,
  • nuclear decommission.



1. Participation in the central activity of the JRC

The central activity of the JRC means research activity in various offices, research institutions and reference laboratories. It aims to implement the relevant EU policy and provide the scientific and technical background. Typically, this option involves the implementation of projects specified in the work programme.

2. Joint research projects

Since 1994 the JRC have been able to be a consortium partner in EU Research Programmes. Part of the JRC budget is provided on a tender basis. The JRC aims to engage in cooperation relationships which fit in with its institutional projects.

The relevant Hungarian institutions can take part in the research projects of these institutions.


  • Indirect actions
    In Horizon 2020 JRC takes part in RDI actions under the same conditions as other legal entities from member states. Indirect actions complement the activities performed in the JRC’s own work programme and are essential for acquiring and sharing expertise and methodology.
    The vast majority of the activities are collaborative research projects and networks which enable long-term partnerships with the prominent actors of European research.
  • Institutional networks
    To meet its objectives and deliver high-quality scientific support and results, the JRC has developed lasting partnerships with external entities sharing a common interest in specific research areas.
    This collaboration is essential for the JRC’s work on harmonisation and validation of methods and measurements, establishing common standards, and providing scientific and technical support for the implementation of European legislation. JRC’s networking activities also respond to European policy makers’ and EU Member States’ increasing demands to establish common scientific reference systems.
    The JRC collaborates with over 1000 partner organisations in around 100 institutional networks.
  • Collaboration agreements
    The JRC has nearly 200 working collaboration agreements with public and private research institutions, universities, national and international organisations. The majority of these agreements is bilateral focusing on joint research, information exchange and researcher mobility.
  • Calls for tenders
    The JRC regularly publishes calls for tenders but is not required to publish all public procurement notices under the public procurement rules.
    The calls for tenders are published in the Tenders Electronics Daily (TED) which is operated by the Publications Office. For general information on public contracts concluded with the Commission, please visit the “Public contracts” section on the Commission’s website.

3. Researcher mobility

The JRC has job opportunities for permanent and temporary positions:

Permanent positions: 

Temporary positions:

Currently available researcher positions:

Why work at a JRC research institute?

  • high quality researcher activity,
  • excellent technological infrastructure,
  • innovative and supportive environment,
  • multidisciplinary research activities,
  • lifelong learning and workplace career,
  • flexible working time arrangements,
  • maternity leave,
  • support to employees raising children,
  • social and sports facilities for researchers and their family,
  • multicultural and multilingual environment.

National Contact Point:
Kata Szalontai
National Research, Development and Innovation Office
1077 Budapest, Kéthly Anna tér 1.
Phone: +36 1 896 7250

Updated: 21 April 2018
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