A broader, more varied, optimised IRD network abroad and in the French overseas territories


The first mission of IRD and its network abroad and in the French overseas territories is to contribute through research to the emergence, strengthening and empowerment of scientific communities and higher education and research systems in the countries in which it operates, while striving to respond to the population’s requirements.

Sustained effort throughout 2018 allowed the continued adaptation of this network to the strategic and scientific directions defined in IRD’s Strategic Direction Plan. It also allowed optimisation of the network, in a spirit of mutualisation with other French operators and embassies. This meant savings could be made.

Launched in 2017 with the project of developing the network in order to implement the principle of equitable partnership, 6 scientific and strategic steering committees (CPSS) boasting both North-South and male-female parity were launched in 2018 (Cameroon, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Bolivia, South Africa), following Côte d’Ivoire, Tunisia and Senegal in 2017.

The The sharing of the representation role role was strengthened with the IRD-Cirad mutualisation in Martinique, for a total of 5 positions with shared representatives (South Africa, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Martinique, Tunisia).

In order to define the IRD roadmap for the Mediterranean, a regional meeting was held at the end of November in Tunis.

Key figures

Map of IRD across the world.

In Latin America, Central America and the Caribbean

Drawing on a dense and varied network of scientific partners, IRD works in a spirit of regional cooperation based on the joint construction and sharing of knowledge. The Institute benefits from long-standing presence, recognised by the national funding agencies.

In East Africa and the Indian Ocean

In Southern Africa, East Africa and the Indian Ocean, IRD intervenes in continental and insular contexts which vary in terms of development and cover many scientific themes, such as the marine sciences, climate change, health, the environment and the social sciences.

In West and Central Africa

IRD has been present in West and Central Africa since 1946, and works in all its areas of scientific competence, via multiple partnerships. Nine representatives currently work there.

In the Mediterranean

In spite of its many assets (young, educated population, little extreme poverty and available natural resources), this region faces increasingly significant social and ecological pressures, which challenge the methods for medium and long-term development.

In Asia

In Asia, IRD’s research has a strong regional dimension and covers a vast range of themes: health, human and social sciences, agriculture and soils, marine and coastal environment, biodiversity, volcanology, etc.

In the Pacific

In the Pacific, a zone boasting exceptional biodiversity that is particularly threatened by global changes, IRD covers numerous disciplinary fields: oceanography, terrestrial and marine natural resources, mines and natural risks, health, society and environment, etc.