The Multinational Design Evaluation Programme (MDEP) was established in 2006 as a multinational initiative to develop innovative approaches to leverage the resources and knowledge of the national regulatory authorities who are currently or will be tasked with the review of new reactor power plant designs. MDEP comprises 12 countries' nuclear regulatory authorities and is structured under 3 design-specific working groups and 3 issue-specific working groups which meet several times a year. The OECD/NEA facilitates MDEP's activities by acting as technical secretariat for the programme. The MDEP Policy Group (PG) and the Steering Technical Committee (STC) oversee the programme.
Further details about the organisational structure of MDEP can be found in the terms of reference
Current MDEP members include national regulators from:
Associate members include the United Arab Emirates' regulatory authority. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) also participates in key aspects of MDEP's activities. For more details, please refer to the terms of reference.
MDEP's main objectives can be defined as follows:
To carry out the work, two main lines of activity have been implemented:
A key concept throughout the work of the MDEP is that national regulators retain sovereign authority for all licensing and regulatory decisions.
For more information on the MDEP's accomplishments to date and future work, please see this year's annual report: MDEP 2012-2013 Annual Report.
MDEP engages with key stakeholders involved in ensuring the safety of new reactor designs, manufacturing, construction and operation. At this time, these stakeholders include other national regulatory authorities and international organisations involved in ensuring nuclear safety including the IAEA, Western European Nuclear Regulators' Association (WENRA), NEA Committees on Nuclear Regulatory Activities (CNRA) and Safety of Nuclear Installations (CSNI), the various reactor vendors, nuclear component manufacturers, mechanical and electrical standards development organisations, reactor operators and licensees and key industry representatives such as World Nuclear Association (WNA).
To this end, the MDEP has organised 2 conferences (in 2009 and 2011) to communicate its work with various stakeholders. The MDEP also issues press releases that cover the programme's major events and milestones. However, individual regulators retain sole responsibility for communication on specific new reactor issues.
New chairman takes over at the Multinational Design Evaluation Programme (MDEP)
The Multinational Design Evaluation Programme (MDEP) has appointed Dr. Allison M. Macfarlane of the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) as its new Chairman. Dr. Macfarlane replaces André-Claude Lacoste, former Chairman of the French Nuclear Safety Authority (Autorité de sûreté nucléaire, ASN). Read more...
UAE nuclear regulator joins the Multinational Design Evaluation Programme (MDEP)
On 24-26 September 2012, the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR) of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) participated in its first MDEP meeting as a new associate member, on the occasion of the MDEP Steering Technical Committee meeting which was held in Beijing, China. Read more...
Indian nuclear regulatory body (AERB) joins the Multinational Design Evaluation Programme (MDEP)
On 4 April 2012, India's Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) became the first new member in the MDEP since its inception in 2006. Read more...
In accordance with the terms of reference, the MDEP carries out its work through design-specific and issue-specific working groups as follows:
Working groups for each new reactor design will share information and co-operate on specific reactor design evaluations and construction. Participants in these working groups will include countries actively reviewing, preparing to review or constructing the specific reactor design. Design-specific working groups will be formed when three or more countries express an interest in working together.
Working groups have been established for selected technical and regulatory process areas within the MDEP's Programme of work. These currently include:
Last reviewed: 14 March 2013