General Framework

The ICO bureau may approve ICO endorsement or co-sponsorship to events in the field of optics and photonics, like conferences and schools of international nature, with at least typically 30% of the attendees and at least 50% of the Program Committee from outside the host territory. The ICO Territorial Committee of the territory where the event is to be held must approve the application.


There is usually no ICO financial participation in ICO endorsed events. There may be ICO financial participation in ICO co-sponsored events in the form of a grant, a loan or a participation in the risks. The type of participation is an ICO Bureau decision. 


In ICO co-sponsored events where ICO takes financial risks, an immediate loan can be converted in part or in totality into a grant if the event runs a deficit. In case of a surplus, ICO receives a share of the surplus that will be negocitaed with the organizers.


A typical amount of an ICO grant for major ICO co-sponsored events is US$ 1500-7000, and for other events about US$ 1000-3000. The ICO grant is usually awarded for the purpose of helping identified registrants attending from less favored countries, where they work.


The organisers must comply with the general principle of “free movement of scientists” as defined in the recommendations from the ISC ( International Science Council ). The host territory must guarantee that any bona fide registered participant may attend the event.

Special conditions for ICO participation 

Besides the above general framework, the following rules must be followed by the organizers in any meeting with ICO participation.


ICO would like to avoid the unnecessary proliferation of conferences; section 6 of the questionnaire below should therefore be answered carefully, explaining why this particular conference should be held.


To ensure accessibility from all countries the conference fee may not exceed 850€ for attendance at the conference, receipt of abstracts and access to the conference material on the website, but not accommodation, meals, or transfers.


ICO must be associated from the beginning of the event, and usually no later than 18 months in advance. The use of the ICO logo in documents concerning ICO co-sponsored events is desired and permitted in ICO endorsed events.


Organizers of ICO Cosponsored events are welcome to provide the ICO Secretariat with a 1000 to 2000 words article, if possible with photos and illustrations, for further publicity in the ICO Newsletter. ICO has the liberty to slightly edit the final text.


The ICO Bureau designates one member to represent it in the event committee. Usually, the ICO Associate Secretary (in charge of sponsorship applications) is ex officio a member of the Organizing Committee and should be informed of the progresses.


Free proceedings of the event, if any, must be sent electronically by the organisers to countries where optics development requires special support; a list of addresses appropriate for this purpose selected by ICO will be provided. 


For ICO Cosponsored events, the organizers are always welcome to use the channel of the ICO Territorial Committee mailing list to distribute information. Local industrial participation in the Program Committee and in the Organizing Committee is welcomed.


All ICO co-sponsored and endorsed events will be listed in advance in the section “Forthcoming events with ICO participation” on the ICO website and in the ICO Newsletter. In addition, an article about the congress will be published after its celebration.

Apply 6 months prior to the event! 
Deadlines: April 15 and October 15 each year

Please download and fill the form below and send it by email to the ICO Associate Secretary: Prof. Adrian Podoleanu (