What we do
As the NEA enters its seventh decade of service, it continues to evolve and adapt, but will always be a cost-effective platform for international co-operation with its focus on both today and the future.
The mission of the NEA is to assist its member countries in maintaining and further developing, through international co-operation, the scientific, technological and legal bases required for a safe, environmentally sound and economical use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. It strives to provide authoritative assessments and to forge common understandings on key issues as input to government decisions on nuclear energy policy and to broader OECD analyses in areas such as energy and the sustainable development of low-carbon economies .
To fulfil its mission, the Agency will:
Serve as a forum for sharing and analysing information and experience among member countries, by:
- maintaining an efficient communications network among nuclear experts;
- interacting with the main players in the nuclear field, promoting an open dialogue among operators, regulators, government policy specialists, research and development specialists, international organisations and other stakeholders;
- involving selected non-member partner countries with good non-proliferation credentials, particularly those that are significant players in the nuclear field and that can provide added value to the Agency’s activities;
- alerting policy makers and regulators to significant scientific developments and their implications; preparing state-of-the-art reports that summarise current knowledge in specific technical or regulatory policy areas; ensuring appropriate dissemination of the scientific and technical results of its work; and
- elevating its visibility in member countries and in the international community as an objective and non-promotional organisation.
Foster international co-operation in the nuclear field, by:
- helping to identify common issues, lessons and opportunities, including with selected non-member partner countries as described above;
- facilitating the development of consensus positions, including “collective opinions”, among member countries; developing best practices, common strategies and joint approaches to address pressing issues;
- identifying and addressing gaps in scientific knowledge needing to be filled in support of policy, regulatory and technical decisions; facilitating the development, organisation and co-ordination of internationally funded research projects and other joint undertakings; and
- pursuing strategic collaboration with international organisations in areas of mutual interest.
Help member countries to pool and maintain their technical expertise and human infrastructure, and support their nuclear activities, by:
- assessing developments in the state of the art, documenting experiments and maintaining databases across a range that serves the needs of technical specialists, decision makers, opinion leaders and stakeholders, using, when appropriate, economic tools;
- collaborating on joint events and activities with the IAEA and other relevant organisations on topics of mutual interest in the nuclear energy field;
- providing advice as a scientific, technical, economic and legal centre of nuclear competence;
- contributing to the management and preservation of nuclear knowledge developed through past member country and NEA programmes and experience;
- supporting member countries in their efforts to secure qualified human resources, nuclear skills capability building and the development of a new generation of nuclear experts; and organising peer reviews.
Provide member countries with nuclear policy analyses, by:
- carrying out studies on fundamental aspects of current and future use of nuclear technologies, including life cycle regulation and economic analyses;
- contributing to studies on broader issues, including those carried out within the OECD on energy and green growth;
- drawing on the expertise, products and analytical methods of OECD family organisations; and taking into account human and societal issues as well as concerns of the general public.
To fulfil its mission the NEA will pursue work within the following sector-specific activities:
The NEA occasionally co-sponsors international events where the NEA Director-General or NEA experts will intervene. A list of the events in this category is available on this website.