The primary function of the Joint Research Centre (JRC) is to provide scientific and technological support in shaping European Union policies. More specifically, the Centre brings together technological research and practical applications within the framework of Community policy. A specific JRC programme has been set up in connection with the seventh framework programme of the European Commission.
On 13 November 2012 the Minister of the Environment Untersteller and General Director Ristori signed a letter of intent underlining their intention to work closely together. An information and orientation workshop for departmental managers at the Ministry of the Environment was held on 14 and 15 November 2013 in Ispra/Italy, the location at which 4 of the JRC's 7 institutes are based. The workshop presented specific research projects being run by the institutes and discussed potential areas of common interest.