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Faculty of Natural & Mathematical Sciences

Annual Higgs Lecture

Every year, the Faculty of Natural & Mathematical Sciences invites an eminent speaker from across the fields of mathematics, physics, and informatics to deliver our flagship lecture, the Annual Higgs Lecture.

Named after alumnus and featuring as its inaugural speaker, Professor Peter Higgs, the lecture attracts staff, students and peers from across the science world and higher education sector, and focuses on a different field of science and mathematics each year. The lecture is incredibly popular, offering attendees with the opportunity to hear about a topic in a current area of interest, from world-renowned leaders in their field. 

The 2016 Higgs Lecture will take place on February 19th. More information about the lecture can be located here.


Professor Peter Higgs FRS

Lending his name to our Annual Lecture, Professor Peter Higgs graduated from King's in 1954 with a PhD in Physics.  In 1964 Higgs, together with other theoretical physicists, discovered a way to give masses to elementary particles. This is now the basis for the standard model that successfully describes all the visible matter in the Universe. This theory required the existence of a new kind of particle, commonly called the Higgs boson, which was discovered by the ATLAS and CMS experiments at CERN in 2012, providing dramatic experimental confirmation of Higgs' theoretical ideas. Higgs has received many honours and awards in recognition of his achievements. In 2013, Professor Peter Higgs was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics. 

Professor Higgs' lecture in 2012 was entitled Putting Maxwell in his place. You can view the full lecture and the highlights video below.



Sir John O'Reilly FREng

Director General, Business & Innovation delivered the Annual Higgs Lecture in December 2013, entitled  Information, Knowledge and Wisdom: T. S. Elliot,  Science and Technology, and Industrial Strategy. T hroughout his lecture, Sir John   drew on illustrative examples from across science, engineering and technology and addressed the nature and the place of research in a modern knowledge economy and the vital importance of strong engagement of industry, academia and government within and across the knowledge triangle. Sir John O'Reilly was awarded his knighthood for contributions to science in 2007.

Professor Caroline Series

Emeritus Professor of Mathematics at the University of Warwick, Professor Series has served the mathematical community on many committees both nationally and internationally. In 2014, she was awarded the first Senior Anne Bennett prize of the London Mathematical Society and she is also vice-chair elect of the newly formed International Committee for Women in Mathematics.

Professor Series discussed Thurston and beyond: Hyperbolic geometry in dimension three, and the role William Thurston's discovery of the central role played by hyperbolic geometry. Both her full lecture and the highlights video can be viewed below.

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