CERN does not conduct any secret research. Its business is fundamental scientific research, and most of the world's nuclear physicists are involved with it in some way. However, many important discoveries made at CERN benefit industry, medicine, and other fields of research. For example, positron emission tomography (PET scans), and the web are both technologies that have developed from research conducted at CERN.
CERN's convention explicitly states that its research should be of a 'pure scientific and fundamental character.' Further, the convention states:
The Organization shall have no concern with work for military requirements and the results of its experimental and theoretical work shall be published or otherwise made generally available.
CERN is a laboratory that brings together scientists and researchers from all over the world. The laboratory is funded by its member states. At present these are Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. India, Israel, Japan, the Russian Federation, the United States of America, Turkey, the European Commission and UNESCO have Observer status.
Hundreds of universities and research institutes are involved in research at CERN and they work together on experiments and collaborations.