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The 39th edition of the Joliot Curie International School, entitled “The interplay between atomic electrons and the nucleus: traps, lasers and spectroscopy”, will cover the latest scientific achievements in physics across the blurred line separating the nucleus from the rest of the atom. Although the energies of atomic and nuclear phenomena differ by several orders of magnitude, the interaction between the nucleus and the atomic electrons provides powerful tools for nuclear physics, giving access to properties of the nucleus such as the nuclear radius, the electromagnetic moments or the spin. Conversion-electron spectroscopy, combined with gamma-ray spectroscopy, is also a powerful tool for nuclear structure studies. Moreover, the distribution of electrons around the nucleus dictates the chemical properties of the elements. For super-heavy nuclei, chemistry can be a tool for the physicist to characterize new isotopes. These subjects have made spectacular progress as shown by many recent results, for example at GSI, JINR Dubna and RIKEN for heavy and super-heavy nuclei. In parallel, new instruments are being developed to extend these studies to even more exotic nuclei for precision measurements, for example at ISOLDE/CERN, University of Jyväskylä and GANIL/SPIRAL2. The electronic environment can even change the properties of the nucleus. For example, within a plasma the apparent lifetime of a nucleus or the effective cross-section of nuclear reactions can be significantly modified. The study of these phenomena of astrophysical interest will be possible in the near future with the new generation of high-power lasers, such as APOLLON in France or ELI pillars in eastern Europe. The multi-Petawatt lasers also offer promising perspectives for particle acceleration (electron, gamma, ion and neutron).