The 127th meeting of the Committee of Senior Officials for Scientific and Technical Research (COST) took place in Brussels, Belgium, on 22-23 April 1997. COST is currently coordinating national research of 25 member states (the 15 Member States of the European Union, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Iceland, Norway, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland and Turkey) through actions in various fields of basic and applied research. More than 140 COST actions are presently in progress. The main item on the agenda of this latest COST meeting was the preparation of the COST Ministerial Conference to be held in Prague, The Czech Republic, on 26-27 May 1997. The Ministerial Conference will deal with enlargement, evaluation and the future perspectives of COST. With regard to enlargement, Estonia, Romania and Malta are expected to be granted full membership. Applications from other European States are still under examination. The results of a major evaluation of COST, carried out by a consortium led by PREST (University of Manchester), will be submitted to the conference. In addition, the former French minister for Research and Space, Prof. Hubert Curien, Chairman of a High-Level Reflection Group, will present an assessment of COST undertaken by the group. This will provide the basis for discussions on the future perspectives of COST.