Norway was one of the 12 European countries that co-founded CERN in 1954. Since then, Norwegian researchers, students, and staff have been active in the international environment at CERN and taken advantage of the opportunities that the unique facilities CERN has to offer. The organization currently has over 20 member countries, around 2,600 full-time employees, plus nearly 8,000 scientists and engineers from 500 universities and 80 nations. Norwegian researchers have played a vital role in developing accelerators for particle physics. Odd Dahl was the driving force behind the Proton Synchrotron construction (PS), CERN's first store accelerator, which began operations in 1959. The Intersecting Storage Rings (ISR) accelerator was the first machine for hadron collisions and was built in 1971 under Kjell Johnsen's leadership. The pioneers Rolf Widerøe, Bjørk Wiik, and several other well-known Norwegian accelerator physicists have also made an extraordinary effort in the area and have helped push the research forward.
The Norwegian environment at CERN is involved in many different activities. The environment is engaged in experiments such as ATLAS, ALICE, and ISOLDE. The Norwegian environment is also involved in other CERN activities that create and broaden collaboration in several fields, such as in silicon microsystems and GRID data processing. The Norwegian CERN community also primarily initiated the successful GRID development in Norway.