National Research Programme for Environmental and Occupational Health: results of the 2020 calls for research projects

Today, ANSES is publishing the list of projects selected as part of the 2020 calls for research projects for the National Research Programme for Environmental and Occupational Health. Thirty-four projects were chosen following the selection process, with total funding of six million euros.

ANSES operates the National Research Programme for Environmental and Occupational Health (PNR EST), which is funded from budgets delegated by the Ministries of the Environment and Labour, as well as funds from partner institutions. For the third year running, an additional budget of 2 million euros from the Ministry of Ecological and Inclusive Transition provided specific support for projects on the theme of endocrine disruptors. 

277 projects were submitted in early 2020, in response to the two calls for projects, the first for projects on a general theme, and the second on the theme of "radiofrequencies and health". After a rigorous selection process involving assessment by scientific committees, 34 projects were chosen. 
Thirty-one projects will be funded by ANSES (€5.6 million), two will be supported by the ITMO Cancer institute from the AVIESAN alliance as part of the national Cancer Plan (€0.25 million), and one project by ADEME (€0.18 million). 

Contributing knowledge to ANSES's areas of expertise

These projects, which address health risks to the population, risks to ecosystems and the quality of different environments, will contribute new knowledge to ANSES's various areas of expertise. Six projects focus on occupational risks, and three involve the human and social sciences. 

They also cover different human diseases, such as cancer, with two projects funded by ITMO Cancer; respiratory diseases (three projects); and intestinal diseases (one project). One project concerns child development, specifically autistic disorder, and three others examine fertility disorders.

The projects selected in 2020 relate to one or more types of environmental and occupational exposure:  
Seventeen projects concern chemical agents, of which 10 are on endocrine disruptors and five on plant protection products;

  • four of them focus on radiofrequencies and health;
  • six address issues of ind
  • poor or outdoor air quality, including two on air pollution, and two on particles and nanoparticles in the workplace;
  • two are concerned with light pollution, including one on its endocrine-disrupting effect;
  • two projects deal with the emerging issue of microplastics;
  • three projects focus on pathogens, including two on their vectors, in the framework of vector control.

Ten of these projects are concerned with multiple exposure to chemical and/or physical agents and "cocktail" effects.


The National Research Programme for Environmental and Occupational Health (PNR EST), coordinated by ANSES, funds research on environmental health risks, including occupational risks and risks to ecosystems. 

Its objectives are to:

  • produce the scientific knowledge on health risks associated with the environment and work that ANSES needs to conduct its expert appraisals: either because the studies produce data that will be used for future expert appraisals, or because they fill gaps in knowledge identified in previous reports;
  • develop new methods and tools for health risk analysis;
  • organise research and scientific teams to tackle issues related to the environmental-occupational health theme.

As part of its efforts to promote the work financed as part of the PNR EST, every year ANSES organises Scientific Conferences, to enable the research teams to present their projects to stakeholders from the voluntary and professional sectors, scientists, public institutions, etc. The next Scientific Conferences, on the theme of micro- and nanoparticles, will take place in partnership with the ANR on 20 May 2021.