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Symposium on International Safeguards: Building Future Safeguards Capabilities

5–8 November 2018, Vienna, Austria

Symposium on International Safeguards 2018

The IAEA holds a Symposium on International Safeguards every four years in order to engage the broader safeguards community in addressing challenges and seizing opportunities to strengthen the effectiveness of safeguards implementation.

The 2018 symposium’s theme is 'Building Future Safeguards Capabilities', and will look ahead to emerging technologies and innovative approaches with potential for strengthening and streamlining the implementation of safeguards and explore partnerships and mechanisms of relevance going forward.

To learn more about IAEA safeguards, click here.


The objectives of the symposium are to:

  • Innovate - by generating and exploring new ideas on how processes and technologies might aid the work of the Department, ‘crowdsourcing’ the collective expertise of the participants;
  • Partner - by mobilizing partnerships to explore further the ideas generated and support the needs identified in the Department’s Research &Development Plan; and
  • Improve - by providing a platform for the safeguards community to identify ways to work smarter together in daily safeguards implementation, addressing both challenges and opportunities.


The symposium sessions will address four thematic areas, described below.

  1. Addressing emerging safeguards challenges (CHA)
    The topics under this theme will look at a selected set of known challenges facing the safeguards community in the near term, including the potential impact on safeguards of advances and developments such as additive manufacturing, distributed supply chains, and transnational flows of goods and information.
  2. Leveraging technological advancements for safeguards application (TEC)
    Topics include safeguards applications of advances in: artificial intelligence; analysis, integration and visualization of multi-source data; shared ledger technology; image processing; advanced analytics; robotics and lasers.
  3. Preparing for safeguards for new facilities, processes and campaigns (NEW)
    Topics under this theme address safeguards considerations related to selected new reactor designs which are near the stage of commercial deployment, and to nuclear new builds, as well as safeguards challenges associated with increasing decommissioning activities and disposition of spent fuel and waste.
  4. Shaping the future of safeguards implementation (SGI)
    The sessions under this theme will seek innovation in the day-to-day implementation of safeguards, looking at new ways of working smarter, streamlining and simplifying, building capabilities, resolving challenges and creating effective cooperation. The focus will be on innovation and improvement, involving all stakeholders and partners across a broad range of safeguards activities.


To demonstrate its commitment to sustainability, the IAEA will organize this conference as a 'green meeting' according to the guidelines of the Austrian Ecolabel. This means that the IAEA will keep the ecological impact of the Conference as low as possible. The Vienna International Centre is already a workplace that is powered by carbon neutral electricity from 100% renewable sources. There will be a focus on the areas of paper smart documentation, waste reduction and recycling, and environmentally friendly catering.

The IAEA as organizer will contribute to making the Conference a Green Meeting. Delegates can have a role in this endeavour and are encouraged to choose environmentally friendly options when planning their participation. Small actions can make a big difference: choosing environmentally certified accommodation, giving feedback via the IAEA Conference and Meetings app, sorting waste for recycling, and returning name badges - these will all help to reduce the environmental impact. Information on how to effectively contribute to climate protection, both locally and globally can be found here

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