In a previous post I discussed the application process for tenured research positions with the CNRS. I did not go into the details on the remuneration, but I think this information could be useful. All CNRS personnel (researchers and technical staff) are state employees. The wage level is publicly available, but the information is mainly in French, and not very legibly presented. Once again, this is my personal understanding and not the official position of the CNRS, I am not an accountant, use at your own risk etc.
First, a vocabulary point: The hierarchy is defined by three variables. They are given below starting with the most significant; their values are listed in order of increasing seniority.
- The rank (corps) : CR (chargé de recherche) or DR (directeur de recherche)
- The class (classe) : 2, 1 and (for DRs only) CE (classe exceptionnelle)
- The level (échelon): from 1 to 6 for CR2 and from 1 to 9 for CR1
Since the recruitment takes place almost exclusively at the CR (chargé de recherche) rank, this is what I will discuss in the following. The remuneration is expressed in index points (at the moment, one point is worth 55.5635 €: this value is supposedly indexed on the inflation rate, but it has not increased since 2010) The number of points is given in this table, to be used as follows:
- Each level (column 1) is reached after a seniority in that particular rank indicated in the fourth column (For CR2, use the number of years since the beginning of your PhD). The seniority is cumulative: to reach the 4th CR2 level you need 1+1+1 years of experience. The number of points corresponding to the level is given in the third column (indice majoré).
- Multiply this number by the value of the index point and divide by 12 to obtain the "gross" monthly salary (salaire brut mensuel).1 I use the inverted commas because this amount is after some contributions and taxes. In particular, this is not the total cost of employment!
- Multiply by about 0.83 to obtain the net salary (salaire net). This is the amount that you will effectively receive in your bank account every month. At this point, mandatory health insurance, retirement and all other contributions have already been subtracted, but you will of course need to pay income tax.
Note that the administration can take a few months to validate your work experience, time during which you will be paid a first-level salary. However, once the paperwork is done, you will retroactively receive the difference starting from your first day of employment.
After four years you'll be promoted to CR1, directly to the 4th level, at an index of 623 (the top CR2 level corresponds to the 3rd CR1 level, but some of the seniority "carries over" from one class to the next).
For your information, the remuneration level for all CNRS positions is also available.
Aside from the basis salary calculated above, you can also receive:
Extra incomeResearchers are allowed to supplement their salary within certain limits. The most common supplementary activities are teaching and consulting.
1. The gross salary can also include a small residence bonus and a family contribution (depending on the number of children), but I neglected them in the calculation. See here for more details. ↩