The French National Research Agency is a public research organisation under the authority of the Ministry of Higher Education and Research. With a staff of more than 32,000 (26,000 permanent employees – 11,600 researchers and 14,400 engineers, technicians, and administrative staff), a 2008 budget of 3.277 billion euros, 588 million of which were its own resources, and sites throughout France, the CNRS is active in all fields of knowledge with more than 1,200 research and service units.