Research and radical innovation are fundamental to addressing the challenges of living sustainably. Our world-leading research focuses on finding solutions to major global challenges, through significant international collaborations and connections with industry.
We are creating a new Global Research Institute to focus on the Net Zero challenge, connecting researchers across all our campuses and from multiple disciplines. Founded on our leading expertise in energy, engineering, and construction, we're building a new future through decarbonisation, energy transition and radical innovation. Read more about our global Net Zero research.
Some research is 'blue sky' or fundamental and some is applied, and research impact is the difference it makes in the real-world. Watch how our research is making an impact to all of our lives.
We have the technology, but energy transition needs multi-disciplinary, multi-system integration, to engineer solutions. In Orkney, the emerging Islands Centre for Net Zero and the ReFLEX project are leading the way.
A just transition
Net Zero cannot be achieved in isolation and must go hand-in-hand with societal change, to ensure a just transition for everyone. Our award-winning research around disadvantage and inequality drives policy for a sustainable future.
We have a lead role in IDRIC, the Industrial Decarbonisation Research and Innovation Centre, the focus of the green transformation of the UK's industrial heartlands, finding solutions where they matter most.
From sensing and robotics, to the decarbonisation of the cement industry in the UAE, to the revolutionary, recycled K-Briq - we are working with partners and industry to reduce emissions and build a sustainable future.
Sustaining our seas
The sustainability of our seas is fundamental to our wellbeing. Our marine sciences and fisheries research, from the Orkney campus to the Lyell Centre, focus on the management of ocean resources and environmental risk.
Sustainability is not one-size-fits-all. Developing countries and resource-poor communities need innovation to enable energy conservation and greater self-sufficiency. A ground-breaking project shows how effective technology can be.
Whether through adoption of new technologies or considering small changes within society with the potential to make significant contributions to net zero goals, gamification research in sustainability is helping inform where impactful change can happen.
Research itself can be energy and resource intensive. We are working to reduce the environmental impact of our research by improving the sustainability of our laboratories. Heriot-Watt have joined the LEAF (Laboratory Efficiency Assessment Framework) programme to promote and support actions to reduce carbon emissions and resource usage. We will be rolling out recommendations and access to resources provided as part of the programme, starting with a pilot project within the School of Engineering and Physical Sciences.