At the start of the 2000s, the Campus on the Saclay Plateau was already home to many institutions. One major university (University of Paris-Sud 11), three engineering schools (Supélec, Institut d’Optique Graduate School, Ecole Polytechnique), and one business school (HEC) were present here. Also, six research institutions were located here: The CEA, CNRS, INRA, INRIA, ONERA, and IHES. To fill out the research picture, we should also mention important infrastructures (SOLEIL synchrotron, Orphée/LLB neutron source, lasers, neurospin etc.).
Through these institutions, more than 42,000 people, including 17,000 students, 9,000 researchers, and more than 4,000 doctoral candidates, work here. The Campus on the Saclay Plateau is also a place where more than one third of the students live; more than 5,500 live in close proximity to the Campus, including a good half of them in student residences affiliated with the Grande Ecoles. The other half, consisting primarily of students at Paris-Sud 11 University, live in student housing, especially the Orsay CROUS (Centre régional des œuvres universitaires et scolaires - French university student services centres) residences. The presence of these students is also accompanied by local life that offers many opportunities for cultural, sports, and festive activities.
The Saclay Campus is open to the public, local residents, local governments, and businesses. It is also a place for the popularisation of science, where many actors are involved in organising exchanges, events, and meetings with the public. The Campus will cultivate dialogue with local residents and elected officials to establish a rigorous information policy. This is an important condition for the success of the project.