Association des instituts Carnot


To forge a genuine operating dynamic, unlock synergies and take full advantage of their shared commitment to partnership-based research and innovation in business, all Carnot Institutes belong to the Association of Carnot Institutes (AiCarnot) through their oversight body. AiCarnot brings together all of the Carnot Institutes and is tasked with coordinating and structuring the network.

One of Carnot's major strengths is an effective and dynamic network that enables the structures to harness complementarity in pursuit of quality research partnerships and to work together to support businesses’ innovation projects. A network-based organisation structure is contingent on close ties and exchanges between Carnot Institute directors who share the same set of values. Focus groups are organised as well as meetings to share best practices and feedback that foster ever more professional partnerships with business.

In addition to the many meetings organised within the network, the AiCarnot strategy seeks to promote the network to local, national and international businesses, showcase and defend the Carnot approach in dealings with decision-makers and oversight bodies, and boost the network itself in order to demonstrate and harness all the potential of this collective energy. This strategy breaks down into five broad focuses:

  • Organisation by economic sector,
  • SMEs and start-ups,
  • International business,
  • Local and regional presence and recognition,
  • Communication

Organisation by economic sector

To meet the R&D requirements of businesses more effectively, the aim is to partner the Carnot Institutes and the network generally and to support their organisation into economic sectors as a means of delivering the best solutions to businesses’ requirements in different industries. This involves:

  • developing a constantly updated research offering structured by major business sector with regard to what companies need; 
  • organising the network's technological platforms by sector; 
  • the ability to promote this offering to businesses (easier access thanks to a single “go to person” for each request, a proactive marketing strategy – especially for SMEs and mid-caps that need to innovate more to be more competitive –, strategic analyses by major sector and harnessing all of the data for tracking purposes and tailoring the offer to market developments, etc.).

SMEs and start-ups

SMEs and start-ups are a key focus of Carnot’s strategy. To boost the R&D activity of these businesses, an organisation structure and initiatives that factor in their specific characteristics are required.

A proactive marketing approach needs to be devised and the partnership strategy often has to be adapted to much shorter deadlines in terms of research, process engineering and return on investment. This requires a fresh approach and a change in mindset on the part of the Institutes, facilitated by the sharing of best practices and “inter-Carnot” feedback.

A Club of the start-ups spun off by Carnot Institutes is being set up and organised around sector-based networking opportunities.

International business

AiCarnot strives to boost the international visibility of the Carnot network in order to develop business opportunities and promote the attractiveness of France. This involves communicating Carnot’s message and data as effectively as possible both on the international stage and among the various delegations encountered inside and outside France, supporting Carnot’s participation in European programmes and sharing best practices and feedback at international level.

Like most public research structures, Carnot labs also foster close ties with numerous international research bodies.

Local and regional presence and recognition

As a national research network with strong local roots, AiCarnot seeks to facilitate the work of the different Institutes with local businesses and in local ecosystems, increasing the renown of the Carnot approach and the role it plays in each region and making sure the network is firmly embedded in regional innovation policies. This requires a structured regional offering, regularly taking stock of what local businesses need and a strategy that brings together all local and regional players with a stake in research and innovation. 


To boost the visibility of the network both inside and outside France, our communication strategy – which is validated by the AiCarnot Board and the different Carnot Institute directors – has three key focuses: stepping up digital communication to reach our three key targets: businesses, institutions and the Carnot network itself; internal communication that has everyone on the same page and consolidates network-based ties; and external communication based around the events or exhibitions organised by AiCarnot. The whole strategy is underpinned by proactive media communication.

Objective: enhancing Carnot’s reputation with all of our targets, particularly businesses, by supporting the development of research partnerships with Carnot Institutes. 

AiCarnot organisation structure

AiCarnot’s operating budget for 2022 was 1,5 million €. Its income is made up of the dues of its members and various forms of aid for specific initiatives (“Rendez-vous Carnot”, actions that target SMEs and international businesses, etc.) sponsored by local and regional agencies and partners tasked with promoting research and innovation.

The Board of Directors has 15 members. 

Composition of the association bureau:

Vice Treasurer:
Vice Secretary:

Alexandre BOUNOUH (institut Carnot CEA LIST)
Amaury MARTIN (institut Carnot Curie Cancer)
Philippe LUBINEAU (institut Carnot Cetim)
Manuel COLLET (institut Carnot Ingenierie@Lyon)
Philippe TAILHADES (institut Carnot Chimie Balard Cirimat)
Ahmed LBATH (institut Carnot LSI)
Thierry BRAINE-BONNAIRE (institut Carnot Clim'adapt)
Catherine RENARD (institut Carnot Qualiment)