Centre interdisciplinaire sur les enjeux stratégiques (CIENS)

Our Rules of Procedure

Submitted for approval to the CIENS Strategic Orientation Council on 21 March 2024 and to the CIENS Scientific and Educational Steering Committee on 2 July 2024.

I- Purpose and scope :

Membership of the Interdisciplinary Centre on Strategic Issues (CIENS) is conditional upon compliance with these internal regulations. The internal rules apply to all members of CIENS.

Any modification will be submitted to the CIENS Council for approval.

The internal regulations are available on the CIENS website and in printed form in the office of the Director of CIENS.

II- Organisation and missions of CIENS :

The Interdisciplinary Centre on Strategic Issues (CIENS) is a teaching and research platform devoted to nuclear defence and strategic issues in the broadest sense, with an interdisciplinary approach and as part of a partnership between the École Normale Supérieure de Paris (ENS-PSL) on the one hand, the French Atomic Energy and Renewable Energies Commission (CEA), the French Ministry of Defence (DGRIS, Directorate General for International Relations and Strategy) and the French National Agency for Information Systems Security (ANSSI). 

At the École Normale Supérieure, the CIENS is administratively attached to the Humanities Department. 

Its missions are as follows:

– To set up an interdisciplinary research centre covering all issues relating to strategic affairs. In particular, it will deal with issues relating to military nuclear power, cyber-strategy, defence and arms control, strategic space issues and, more broadly, the balance of power between powers.

– Offer a set of multi-disciplinary courses on strategic affairs, which will form a minor in ‘International relations and contemporary strategic issues: diplomacy, security, defence’ at the ENS, from the start of the academic year in September 2024.

– Support the research of young researchers (doctoral students and post-docs) working on strategic issues.

The CIENS is managed by a Director. The Director leads the scientific and administrative policy of the CIENS in accordance with the general guidelines defined by the Strategic Orientation Council and the CIENS Scientific and Educational Steering Committee. 

The Strategic Orientation Council issues opinions on the general orientations of the CIENS, its multiannual scientific programme, its educational project and its positioning within the Parisian, French and European academic landscape. It is made up of qualified personalities appointed for 3 years from outside ENS-PSL and PSL. It meets once a year.

The Scientific and Pedagogical Steering Committee issues opinions on issues relating to the teaching provided by members of the CIENS, its multi-year scientific programme and, more generally, the integration of the CIENS into the life of the School in both pedagogical and scientific terms. It is made up of teacher-researchers representing the ENS-PSL departments interested in the CIENS’ areas of study (history, geography, philosophy, social sciences, computer science, etc.), possibly teacher-researchers from other PSL establishments, as well as representatives of the ENS-PSL management. It meets once a year.

The CIENS Board meets at least five times a year and as required. It is made up of the following members: the Director; the teacher-researchers with a statutory attachment to CIENS; the administrative staff; and a qualified person appointed by CIENS’ institutional partners (CEA, Ministry of the Armed Forces/DGRIS, ANSSI) to represent them and coordinate their exchanges with CIENS. 

At the invitation of the Director, associate researchers may attend meetings of the CIENS Board, where they have a consultative vote.

At least once a year, the CIENS Board organises a joint meeting with the representatives of the three institutional partners of CIENS (CEA, Ministère des Armées/DGRIS, ANSSI) to report on the progress of CIENS projects, its achievements and the use of funding.

III- CIENS members :

CIENS members include :

– Affiliated teacher-researchers

– Administrative staff

– Associate researchers ;

– Associate experts; 

– External contributors.

A. Definitions and recruitment procedures

Research professors have a doctorate or equivalent. Doctoral students are enrolled in a thesis at a higher education or research institution.

– Affiliated teacher-researchers

These are all lecturers whose main statutory affiliation is with CIENS and ENS-PSL. In addition to their affiliation with CIENS, they are attached to a UMR belonging to ENS-PSL.

– Administrative staff

Administrative staff are recruited on contract by ENS-PSL and made available for CIENS activities

– Associate researchers

Associate researchers have a main university affiliation outside the CIENS. Their affiliation with CIENS is secondary. They may not request association with an ENS-PSL research unit via their association with CIENS. 

The researcher must submit a reasoned written request for association, including a CV with a list of publications and a research project. Association is by decision of a majority of the members of the CIENS Council, for a renewable period of three years. 

Former teacher-researchers affiliated to the CIENS (post-docs, doctoral students) are automatically attached to the CIENS, as associate researchers if they have a doctorate, provided that they submit a request to the Director.

– Associate experts

Associate experts have a main professional affiliation outside the CIENS, in the field of strategic affairs (diplomacy, defence, security, etc.) and in connection with the themes studied within the CIENS. 

Membership is subject to a reasoned written application accompanied by a CV. Association is by decision of a majority of the members of the CIENS Council, for a renewable period of three years.

Among the CIENS associate experts, a qualified personality is appointed by the three CIENS institutional partners (CEA, Ministry of the Armed Forces/DGRIS, ANSSI) to sit on the CIENS Board, coordinate CIENS exchanges with all its institutional partners, and contribute to CIENS scientific and educational projects.

– External contributors

External lecturers have a main professional affiliation outside the CIENS and are responsible for at least one teaching activity (course or research seminar) on a half-yearly basis at the ENS. They are welcomed annually by decision of the CIENS Director, after consultation of the CIENS Council.

Reception of trainees

The CIENS may, by decision of the management, accept trainees who are studying in a higher education establishment in France. All internships must be covered by an internship agreement signed before the start of the internship, between the intern, ENS-PSL and the educational establishment from which the intern originates. The trainee may receive an allowance in accordance with the terms of French legislation and regulations in force at the time of signature.

Affiliated teacher-researchers : 

Researchers affiliated to CIENS are entitled to:

– An office and a workstation on the CIENS premises;

– CIENS business cards;

– Have a web page on the CIENS website to present their CV and publications;

– Have an access badge for ENS-PSL premises and libraries;

– Use the CIENS address as their professional address and have a professional email address at ENS-PSL;

– Apply to the CIENS Council for funding (conference papers, publication assistance, co-organisation of events, missions, etc.).

They undertake to:

– Participate actively and regularly in CIENS teaching and research activities;

– Organise scientific events at CIENS;

– Transmit and update their biographical details on the CIENS website;

– Submit an activity report to the Director once a year;

Administrative staff

Administrative staff are entitled to have access to a dedicated workstation and address, to use the CIENS address as their professional address, and to have a professional e-mail address at ENS-PSL.

Associate researchers and experts

Associate researchers and experts undertake to participate regularly, as far as possible, in the work of the CIENS (paid or voluntary lectures) and to co-organise scientific events with the CIENS. They undertake to mention their association with the CIENS in their publications and work and in all circumstances where this is relevant.

They participate in the elaboration and development of the CIENS’ research areas. 

Researchers and experts associated with the CIENS may:

– Have a web page presenting their CV and publications;

– Be issued with an access badge for ENS-PSL premises and libraries;

– Use the CIENS address as their professional address and have a professional email address at ENS;

– Apply to the CIENS Council for funding (conference papers, publication assistance, co-organisation of events, missions, etc.).

– Indicate their affiliation to CIENS in all articles, books or other scientific productions produced during their presence at CIENS or for which the preparatory work was carried out at CIENS.

 B. Rights and obligations

The rights and obligations of the various members concerning the scientific and administrative life of the CIENS are set out below. Obligations arising from employment contracts and agreements signed between ENS-PSL and its members are not mentioned.

External contributors : 

External contributors can:

– Have a biographical profile on the CIENS website;

– Have an access badge for ENS-PSL premises and libraries.

All CIENS members undertake to respect the scientific integrity charter of the Université PSL, which aims in particular to combat plagiarism and respect moral rights and copyright. They are subject to the obligations of the École Normale’s internal regulations.

C. The CIENS Council

The CIENS Board has an advisory role. In particular, it is consulted by the Director on :

– The CIENS scientific and teaching policy (scientific structuring, organisation of teaching, scientific events);

– Funding applications (support for the organisation of events, publications, etc.);

– Hosting researchers, associate experts and guest speakers.

The CIENS Board is kept informed by the CIENS Director of the policies of the various partners and their impact on the development of the CIENS, and of the recruitment of new statutory researchers.

At the time of discussions on funding applications, the CIENS Management presents the CIENS Council with the budget allocated to scientific programming.

The CIENS Council is chaired by the CIENS Director. It meets at least five times a year. Two-thirds of its members constitute a quorum. Opinions are adopted by a majority of the votes cast. In the event of a tie, the Director has the casting vote.

IV- Principles guiding the allocation of funding

A- Mobility, missions

CIENS teacher-researchers, associate researchers and associate experts may receive financial support if the mission includes a presentation by the applicant at a scientific event (conference, colloquium, study day, summer school) or if it involves field research carried out within the framework of the research areas defined by the CIENS.

This support may be partial or total.

B- Organisation of events

The Management has its own reserve, of an amount set by the CIENS Council, from which it may approve, without prior consultation of the CIENS Council, requests for funding of less than this amount, within the framework of the general guidelines set during the general discussion of the budget by the CIENS Council.

C- Publication grants

Publication grants may be awarded for publications resulting from work carried out at CIENS or falling within its research areas.

D- Procedure for the allocation of funding for scientific projects for teacher-researchers from outside the CIENS and ENS-PSL Masters students.

For teacher-researchers from outside the CIENS:

CIENS awards funding for scientific events to tenured lecturers and research grants to doctoral students and young researchers (post-doctoral students), both from its own funds and in partnership with other institutions. This funding is used to support research that is in line with the CIENS’ research areas and missions.

A call for applications is published by the Director in the first half of each academic year. This call specifies the terms and conditions of the procedure, i.e. the type and duration of funding, the conditions of award and the formalities for submitting applications. 

Applications for funding must include precise budgetary details and scientific arguments. Applications for co-financing are given particular weight in the selection of projects. 

The application selection committee is made up of the CIENS Board. External rapporteurs may be invited to assess the scientific quality of the applications.

The members of the selection committee have an obligation of confidentiality regarding the personal data of candidates and the selection process.

For ENS-PSL Master’s research students:

CIENS awards field research grants to Master’s students at ENS-PSL, both from its own funds and in partnership with other institutions. These grants are used to support research that is in line with the CIENS’ research areas and missions.

A reasoned application including the candidate’s research project and a letter of recommendation from the dissertation director must be sent to the CIENS management at least two months before the departure on the research field.

The CIENS Board decides which research projects to support and the amount of funding. Competent external referees may be invited to assess the scientific quality of the applications submitted.

The members of the CIENS Board and the external referees are bound by an obligation of confidentiality regarding the personal data of applicants and the selection process.