CERN and UNESCO celebrate anniversary of CERN Convention

The sixth session of the CERN Council took place in Paris, from 29 June to 1 July 1953. It was here that the Convention establishing CERN was signed, subject to ratification, by 12 states (Image: CERN)

At a ceremony today at UNESCO headquarters in Paris, France, CERN and UNESCO are commemorating the signature of the CERN Convention and the subsequent 60 years of science for peace.

On 1 July 1953 in Paris, under the auspices of UNESCO, 12 founding member states signed the Convention that led, in 1954, to the establishment of the European Organization for Nuclear Research.

The Convention entered into force on 29 September 1954, the official date of the Laboratory’s foundation. CERN was created with a view to relaunching fundamental research in Europe in the aftermath of the Second World War and 60 years on it has become one of the world’s most successful examples of scientific collaboration. For 60 years, CERN has brought together scientists from all around the globe and has provided society with numerous benefits through research, innovation and education.

Don't miss today's live webcast from UNESCO headquarters, from 10am CET. Available here.

Order of ceremony

10 am - 11 am

  • Opening of Ceremony by Maciej Nalecz, Director of the Division of Science Policy and Capacity Building, UNESCO
  • Address by Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO
  • Address by Rolf Heuer, Director-General of CERN
  • Video clip “CERN: 60 years of science for peace”
  • Address by Agnieszka Zalewska, President of the CERN Council
  • Hommage to François de Rose, one of CERN's founding fathers, by his daughter Laurence Rousselot
  • CERN as seen by a young phycisist, Claire Lee (ATLAS Collaboration)

11 am - 12 pm

Roundtable discussion on “Science for Peace”, moderated by Katya Adler, a renowned journalist.


  • Lalla Aïcha Ben Barka, Assistant Director-General of Africa Department, UNESCO
  • Alexei Grinbaum, Researcher & Philosopher, Commissariat à l'énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives (CEA-LARSIM)
  • Fernando Quevedo, Director of the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP)
  • Zehra Sayers, Co-chair of SESAME's Scientific Advisory Committee
  • Jan Van Den Biesen, Vice-President of Philips Research Public R&D Programs

12 pm - 12.15 pm

  • Closing remarks by Frédérick Bordry, Director of Accelerators and Technology, CERN.

This event has been organised within the framework of #CERN60 events. In 2014, CERN is celebrating 60 years of science for peace.