The mission of Athena RC is to conduct outstanding research in Informatics and Computational Sciences and to ensure this research has an impact on society, tackling global challenges and addressing local needs. Athena RC studies a broad spectrum of research issues within these fields, including some raised by other sciences, industrial applications, or societal challenges. 

The scope of activities of Athena RC includes all Information and Communication Technologies, from the perspective of both Computer Science and Computational Sciences, and covering all software and hardware aspects. These include all areas of informatics, data science, robotics, automation, signal processing, artificial intelligence, networking and digital communication, and modelling.

Multidisciplinarity is at the foundation of the research philosophy of Athena RC, which carries out R&D both at the level of information technology itself and at the level of specific applications. Computational sciences thus form a strong component of the Athena RC activities, including - but not being limited to - computational linguistics, archaeology, engineering, medicine, biology, biodiversity, earth observation, space science, mechanics, and the arts.

Together with research, innovation is also a fundamental pillar of the mission of Athena RC. Research institutes, spin-off companies, and three highly-specialised clusters in knowledge-intensive thematic sectors create a fertile technological innovation ecosystem within the Center. Collaboration between all actors, including systematic efforts to bring research results to market, has always been mutually beneficial.