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Policy statement

SCK CEN is a world leader in nuclear research, services and education that takes the needs of its stakeholders into account. To this respect, we are fully committed to delivering high quality research, services and products with the emphasis on

  • consistently striving for excellence in scientific research and development;
  • objectivity and integrity in analysis and consultancy;
  • professionalism in production, training and services.

As SCK CEN is dedicated to constantly developing and taking advantage of new technologies in all of its activities, we have to consider both the opportunities and the potential risks associated with being at the forefront of technological progress. Therefore, we strive towards a proactive response to these risks as the basis for a strong organisational culture assured by a coherent integrated management system (IMS). The integration relates to safety and health, security, information security, environment and quality.

SCK CEN - Beleidsverklaring (2019)

The integrated management system defines the corporate structure, the associated authorities and responsibilities and the tools necessary to support and deploy this policy in a step by step approach. Its design is process-based and where needed, supported by appropriate workflows. Within the processes all risks and associated mitigating actions will be described. Performance evaluation, incident reporting, return of experience and continuous improvement are considered as fundamentals of this system.

The management system shall be aligned to all applicable requirements and will integrate them including compliance with international, national and regional legislation, codes, standards and licenses. As such, we acknowledge the importance of respecting these requirements.

We are fully committed to developing and implementing appropriate strategies, objectives, plans, and procedures that are consistent with this policy and that will lead to its successful implementation. These objectives and plans will be reviewed regularly considering all changes in applicable operating conditions, in organisation or physical systems, in context, in strategic plans and in legislation.

Striving for excellence

We are well aware of the fact that our operations and installations, like any human activity, might have an impact on society, our environment, our property and the well-being of our staff. We also want to demonstrate excellence in protecting these assets and resources. Therefore, we also expect every employee, contractor, visitor, and student working on our site to take personal responsibility for adhering strictly to all the principles affecting the organisational culture.

Including:

  • Safety is the primary responsibility for each staff member overriding all other priorities.

  • We take the responsibility to protect people, property and the environment from potential malicious acts involving of nuclear and radioactive material, certainly preventing its unauthorized removal. This includes managing our security completely by employing an integrated system based upon detection, delay, and response;

  • We take the responsibility to protect those present on our site ensuring safe work conditions and practices with the intent of avoiding any harm, injury, danger or health problems. More specifically, we will adhere to the ALARA principle (As Low As Reasonably Achievable) in order to minimize any radiation exposure of staff and public accordingly. The basis for the safety management system is IAEA GSR part 2 and ISO 45001.

  • In order to minimize exposure of our clients and ourselves to information security and cyber security risks. We will safeguard information confidentiality, data integrity, data authenticity and availability, access to property, digital assets and material in a consistent manner. The basis for this management system is ISO/IEC 27001 , ISA/IEC 62443 and IAEA NSS 17.

  • We want to foster a responsible research culture, by striving for scientific and technological excellence founded on sound quality assurance and scientific integrity and by adopting a self-critical reflexive attitude towards society, practicing openness and dialogue. The basis for this ethical conduct is the SCK CEN ethical charter.

  • We want to prove full compliance for all provided products and services with the aim of achieving zero defects, ensuring a sustainable stakeholder relationship and customer satisfaction. The quality management system is certified according to ISO 9001 and ISO/IEC 1 7025, where appropriate.

  • For which we want to take care by minimising any environmental impact as well as by preventing pollution (including radiological impact and contamination), by conserving resources and by remediating existing pollution. This also implies a gradual increase in sustainable procurement.

Assistance, guidance and control in the realisation of the objectives in these different domains will be provided by the Internal Service for Prevention and Protection at Work. The objective is, in cooperation with all staff, to prevent non-conformities, unsafe conditions, safety and environmental incidents and/or security breaches. To this regard, we use a program for managing return of experience in order to report any confirmed incident or discrepancy in a timely manner, as required by the applicable legislation. We ourselves will communicate openly to our national and international stakeholders on the performance of the management system.

SCK CEN - Beleidsverklaring (2019)

We encourage an open, questioning attitude towards this corporate culture. We, in close cooperation with all staff, will make the necessary efforts to promote this corporate culture and policy, making sure it will be integrated in all of our core and management processes.

Finally, we will provide all necessary resources in order to support and maintain this policy and any objectives resulting from this policy’s deployment.

Prof. dr. Eric van Walle
Director General, representing the SCK CEN Management Committee

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