The next CERN? Why the Southeast European International Institute for Sustainable Technologies should be on the scientific radar

Founded in late 2016 by Prof. Herwig Schopper, former Director General of CERN and initiator of the major SESAME project in Jordan, The Southeast European International Institute for Sustainable Technologies (SEEIIST) is Europe’s newest international research infrastructure based in South-eastern Europe.  

The main missions for SEEIIST are to develop new opportunities for cutting-edge research and technology for the region’s benefit, and to help build mutual trust in both the area and amongst the scientific community, as has been demonstrated by CERN in Europe and SESAME in the Middle East.  

Since its inception, SEEIIST is tackling the fragmented landscape of research in the region. By drawing on past experiences and a support network and funding being provided by the European Union, SEEIIST is unlocking vast potential and talent to help bolster not only its mission but to seek effective change for the lives of people in South-eastern Europe. 

Since 2020, SEEIIST has begun its mission to combat cancer. South-eastern Europe is facing more challenges compared to Western Europe in combating cancer due to the lack of modern early diagnostic tools and state of the art treatment. This goal is fully aligned with Horizon Europe’s Cancer Research Mission and is a great step towards collaborative scientific research in the field of cancer treatment. In doing so, SEEIIST is committed to providing access to the innovative particle cancer treatment for the first time in the region. 

By fostering collaboration through scientific diplomacy, SEEIIST is at the forefront of research and innovation. By emulating CERN and SESAME, SEEIIST is proving to be a successful partner whose efforts to help mend the fragmented research landscape are invaluable. By actively working against the brain drain in the region and encouraging international collaboration, SEEIIST is not only effectively creating a strategy for combatting cancer but also building a foundation for future scientific research and further collaboration possibilities.  

What SEEIIST is doing differently is placing the lives of those people that live in South-eastern Europe at the centre of their strategic thinking. By identifying a critical and important issue, SEEIIST is ensuring that scientific research and innovation has a direct impact on the lives of individuals. SEEIIST has taken its first few steps into the world of international scientific collaboration but should already be on everyone’s radar.  

The SEEIIST project is an example of how the mobilisation of innovators across the EU and the region is crucial, and the Western Balkans is no exception. Horizon Europe, the EU’s new 7-year framework programme (2021-2027) for research and innovation, represents the most ambitious research and innovation programme ever and is also open to researchers and small and medium sized enterprises based in the Western Balkans. 


Geographical focus
  • WBC
Scientifc field / Thematic focus
  • General

Entry created by Admin on October 1, 2021
Modified on October 13, 2021