NORMAN – Network of Reference Laboratories and Related Organisations for Monitoring and Bio-monitoring of Emerging Environmental Pollutants (2005 – 2008) and permanent NORMAN Association (2009 – present)

Country: EU 27 Member States, Europe, Canada
Client/funding: European Commission/EU 6th Framework Programme No. 018486; fees of members of the NORMAN Association since 2009
Duration: 10/2005 – present
Partners: 59 leading European environmental institutes; for the latest list see

NORMAN created and implemented a network among European reference laboratories and related organisations dealing with emerging chemical pollutants, for which Europe-wide data were scarce or of “insufficient” quality. The final objective of the project was to identify the gaps in existing knowledge and provide tools for collection, evaluation and harmonisation of available data and applied analytical methodologies. The activities supported identification of newly emerging pollutants, improved the Europe-wide inter-comparability of the data and prevented duplication of research in EU25 countries.
NORMAN was based on a core-network of research institutes, reference laboratories and environmental agencies with proven experience in the field of emerging substances, and covering all relevant environmental water, soil and air compartments. In the course of the project, NORMAN developed and consolidated a working methodology, which enabled a natural extension of the initial core network in terms of coverage of individual EU Member States and different fields of expertise. The resulting extended network prepared the ground for sustainable co-operation between providers (e.g. reference/expert laboratories, research centers, etc.) and users (e.g. risk assessors, river basin authorities, etc.) of the information on emerging pollutants.

The major components of the project were:
NETWORK: Construction, implementation and institutionalisation of the network;

Environmental Institute was a workpackage leader of the SEARCH subproject and participated in all other subprojects. In 2009 a permanent NORMAN Association (46 member organisations from more than 25 countries) has been established with EI as one of the eight founding members.

EI experts participate actively in all activities of the NORMAN network, namely: