The future of ICRP: towards a centenary and beyond

Ann ICRP. 2016 Jun;45(1 Suppl):5-8. doi: 10.1177/0146645315613480. Epub 2015 Dec 1.


The International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) has been in existence for 87 y, since its establishment in 1928. It remains a leading authority in radiological protection, and its role is to provide recommendations and guidance on all aspects of protection against ionising radiation. The published recommendations of ICRP form the basis of radiation safety standards worldwide. Modernisation of the organisation in recent years has led to new initiatives and changes. These have included writing a strategic plan and code of ethics for the first time. Elections for committee membership have been through open nominations, a process which will shortly be repeated for the membership in the next term, commencing on 1 July 2017. Biennial symposia started in 2011, and the success of the first two symposia has secured this venture as a regular part of the ICRP calendar. ICRP has also revised its method of working with other organisations by establishing 'special liaison organisation' status. This has improved collaboration with the ever-expanding number of organisations working in radiological protection, with whom it is important that ICRP has essential links. ICRP is also looking to review its legal basis and governing documents in the future, in order to ensure that best practices are being followed as ICRP evolves. In addition, the strategic plan will be reviewed and updated regularly. Other ways of working with organisations will be considered to further strengthen engagement with the wider radiological protection community. ICRP aims to make its publications available at low or no cost, and to produce both a plain language overview of the system of radiological protection and a summary of the recommendations. These activities will require additional financial resources, and ICRP has embarked on a fundraising campaign to support such efforts. ICRP can be proud of its history of maintaining its independence and preserving the wide respect earned over many years. Despite long traditions, ICRP has evolved and will continue to do so to perform as a more modern organisation as it heads towards a centenary and beyond.

Keywords: ICRP; Radiological protection; Recommendations.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Radiation Monitoring
  • Radiation Protection / methods*
  • Radiation, Ionizing*
  • Radiologic Health / organization & administration*