The European Geoparks Network (EGN) was established in June 2000 by four Geoparks in France, Greece, Germany and Spain. The main objective of their cooperation was the protection of geological heritage and the promotion of sustainable development of their territories in Europe. In 2001 the EGN signed an official agreement of collaboration with UNESCO (Division of Earth Sciences) placing the Network under their auspices.
The EGN has a Coordination Committee that coordinates joint programmes and activities between members. It meets twice a year in a different Geopark and comprises two official nominated representatives of each Geopark, GGN Individual members from Europe and representatives of UNESCO, IUGS and IUCN.
The EGN's Advisory Committee is made up of specialists in sustainable development and the promotion of geological heritage. These specialists include representatives from the 4 original zones of the EGN plus elected members and representatives from UNESCO, IUGS and IUCN. The Advisory Committee provides advice on all issues concerning strategy, external relations and the nomination and integration of new zones within the network.
As of September 2017, 70 of the 127 UNESCO Global Geoparks are located in Europe. Ireland has 3 Geoparks in the network, The Copper Coast and Marble Arch Caves being two of the earliest members from 2001.