About Us

The Higgs Centre for Innovation Illustration

Early in 2018, the Higgs Centre for Innovation will open for business.

The building was first announced in 2013 by the Minister for Universities and Science to be built on the site of the Royal Observatory Edinburgh on Blackford Hill.

Our Mission

Our mission is to find and support the best new high-technology businesses in our fields of science, technology and big data, and nurture them into confident and successful businesses.

The Higgs Centre is therefore designed to bridge the so-called 'valley of death' between the lab and the marketplace, and was built alongside STFC’s UK Astronomy Technology Centre (UK ATC) to focus on supporting start-up businesses and SMEs. We do this by removing barriers to entry for companies in these markets, through the provision of capital-intensive facilities and access to world-leading technical expertise at the UK ATC and the University of Edinburgh.

Working in partnership with the University of Edinburgh, the Centre will support PhD students to work directly with start-up companies on real-world problems. This will give the incubatee companies access to leading-edge research of direct relevance to their commercial needs, whilst also providing the PhD students the opportunity to gain entrepreneurial experience.

The Higgs Centre for Innovation is named to honour the achievements of Nobel Laureate, Professor Peter Higgs of the University of Edinburgh, whose theoretical prediction of the Higgs boson – and its subsequent discovery – has had wide ranging scientific implications.

If you wish to speak to us to find out more, contact ​ruairidh.henderson@stfc.ac.uk

ROE Site

Aerial view of the ROE site

The story of the Royal Observatory Edinburgh dates from 1786 and the close ties with the University of Edinburgh. More information regarding the historical significance of the site is available via the following link: Royal Observatory Edinburgh History

Professor Peter Higgs

Professor Higgs in front of display stand

The building is named after Nobel prize winner Professor Peter Higgs,​ CH DSc PhD MSc BSc FRS FRSE FInstP​, whose 1964 prediction of the Higgs Boson was confirmed in 2012 and now forms a central part of our understanding of fundamental physics.

More information about Prof. Higgs.