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The ICSC - World Laboratory

What is the World Laboratory?

The International Centre for Scientific Culture - World Laboratory was founded in Geneva in 1986 by a group of eminent scientists, to help achieve the goals outlined in the Erice Statement. The World Laboratory aims to demonstrate that one of the better ways to aid Developing Countries is to encourage collaboration between their scientific elite and those of Developed Countries, in projects aimed at solving their particular problems, whilst at the same time advancing scientific and human knowledge as a whole.

To this end, the World Laboratory identifies and implements projects in various scientific fields and encourages the exchange of scientific and technological knowledge.

To date, some 43 scientific research programmes have been launched by the World Laboratory, in four main geographical areas - Europe, Eastern Europe, the USA and Third World Countries - thus effectively ensuring that East/West and North/South collaboration becomes a reality.

The World Laboratory projects can be classified into five main groups:


aimed at creating a world-wide network for seismological, nuclear, chemical, meteorological, climatological and global monitoring.


projects which contribute to co-operation in basic science and technology.

Improvement of Modern Life

focusing on nutrition, medicine, the environment and works of ancient civilisations.

New, Safe & Clean Energy Sources

for projects dealing with basic research and the development of new technologies for safe, clean and renewable energy sources.

Transfer of Scientific and Technological

for projects which contribute to the free circulation of scientific information and technological know-how.

In addition, both the World Federation of Scientists and the ICSC-World Laboratory maintain a policy of granting support to young scientists, to enable them to participate in important international scientific events, thereby increasing the fund of scientific knowledge available in their home countries.


Project Implementation Worldwide

The World Federation of Scientists has, as its executive body, the ICSC - World Laboratory which has implemented 55 projects in 50 developing countries. Its scientific achievements are highlighted below.

The response of the scientific community, international organisations and governments to the establishment of this executive body has been most gratifying. In a short lapse of time, it has achieved global presence and gained universal recognition, despite the fact that it is not a governmental organisation.

The key elements of its success are:

  • 12,000 highly qualified scientists voluntarily engaged in the Projects;

  • United Nations recognition;

  • 20 governmental agreements signed;

  • 51 scientific co-operation agreements signed;

  • 30 permanent centres and 6 branches;

  • Implementation of 55 projects in 50 developing countries.


Highlights of Implemented Projects

The following achievements have come about through the establishment of R & D co-operation between Developing and Developed countries' scientists:

  1. A programme on desertification has shown that this process is in fact foreseeable and can be halted and even induced to revert;

  2. Mathematical models to predict drought and floods were developed and shown to be effective for long-term, large scale predictions;

  3. The damming effect of mountain ranges on the pattern of monsoons and its consequences on the extent of droughts has been demonstrated;

  4. The forecast of extreme, localised meteorological events by using inexpensive hardware and software was developed for application in the Mediterranean Basin and made available to developing countries worldwide;

  5. An advanced seismological network to detect seismic events in the Mediterranean basin has been completed. In addition, three regional seismic networks were installed in seismic-prone developing countries. The data collected is not only of immediate use by the beneficiary countries but is also centralised for detailed analysis in Rome, to determine models for predicting seismic events;

  6. A system for forecasting and controlling the rise in the water level of the Yellow River basin has been implemented. This system will prevent a loss of human life numbered in millions and regulate the serious problem of sedimentation;

  7. The psychological, economic and social consequences of deafness in pre-school children can now be avoided;

  8. Scientific proof of a new ambulatory way of caring for babies born prematurely in developing countries, where access to incubators is limited, has been demonstrated and implemented in Latin America and Africa;

  9. Within the context of research efforts to discover a vaccine, the World Laboratory's worldwide network against AIDS established Research Centres in east and west Africa;

  10. Numerous bright young scientists from developing countries have been able to take part in experimental programmes at the forefront of scientific research in high energy physics at CERN;

  11. Detectors employing highly sophisticated technology have been developed for accelerators of the future;

  12. Spectroscopy equipment for environmental research, based on laser ablation of biomolecules, were developed to detect minute quantities and record molecular weights up to one million Daltons, and amino acid sequences in proteins;

  13. A World Laboratory Nuclear Fusion Centre has been set up in China to train young physicists from south-east Asia;

  14. A development and application programme on renewable energy sources is being undertaken in the field of photovoltaic and nanocrystalline cells;

  15. A new approach towards promoting interaction between industry and university research has been implemented in Buenos Aires;

  16. An epidemiological survey for heart diseases was conducted in Kenya and 2 research centres were established in east Africa;

  17. A new source of protein has been developed based on the cultivation of a variety of bean;

  18. A large training programme in advanced biotechnologies has been implemented and three research centres established in China;

  19. Scientists from 10 countries bordering the Mediterranean basin were trained in meteorological and oceanographical modelling and three research centres have been established in the Mediterranean area;

  20. Thanks to the different research programmes of the World Laboratory, some 1,200 man-years of scholarships have been granted to young scientists from 39 different developing countries, thereby allowing them to participate in research work at the very highest scientific level and under direct supervision of eminent scientists.

For further information on the ICSC - World Laboratory
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