Year of the Sea graphic

The Year of the Sea 2018 will celebrate our global contributions to blue economy research with a calendar of engagement events which will educate, inform and inspire - spanning schools, the public, academia and policy makers. For further information on the events, contact HWEngage.


Launch of the Year of the Sea 2018, with entries flooding in from primary schools to our Sea Superhero competition. 


Our Vice-Chancellor's Distinguished Lecture Series visits the Heriot-Watt Dubai campus, with  Prof David Lane discussing underwater robotics and what the future holds for AI and robotics innovation


The month begins with our Inter-campus boat race at Heriot-Watt Malaysia, where teams from Heriot-Watt Dubai and Heriot-Watt Malaysia will take part in the inaugural boat race on Lake Putrajaya.

Our schools events continue, this time with the Multilingual debate, where pupils from across Scotland will take part in a true celebration of linguisitic diversity, featuring staff and undergraduates debating questions around renewable energy. 

World Water Day celebrations include the Inaugural lecture of Professor Ted Henry, 'Losing Nemo in polluted waters' 


The Vice Chancellor's Lecture this month features Dame Jane Francis, Director of the British Antarctic Survey, who will share her experiences exploring the impacts of climate change in this challenging environment.

The Edinburgh International Science Festival is a highlight of April, with multiple events featuring Heriot-Watt Academics and Researchers. Our flagship event will this year take place at Oriam, with a family fun day celebrating science with drop-ins, workshops and crystal maze style challenges.

Our 'Engineering the future' programme will also bring together undergraduates, PhD students and local primary schools, with a innovative new project involving school pupils setting challenges for students to solve!


Our Edinburgh campus will be opening its doors to local communities for an Open Weekend, with activities in labs and workshops, along with talks from our academics. This community event will celebrate and share the research taking place across our global campuses.

For a different flavour of engagement, check out Pint of Science, where our researchers will be chatting about their research in pubs across Edinburgh. 


With the summer comes the Heriot-Watt New Music Project, with a week’s intensive work with the Inchcolm New Music Ensemble, studying, rehearsing and performing music newly written, inspired by the wonderful plainchant from Inchcolm, particularly chosen where the text and music revolves around the sea. Three performances are planned, at Iona Abbey, Tobermory and St Giles Cathedral. 


Our academics will be taking to the stage at the Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas, part of Edinburgh's Fringe Festival. These interactive talks are all about debate, discourse and delibration - a hit on the Fringe circuit.

Our marine station at St Abb's will be opening its doors, inspiring and engaging communities in the research taking place around marine plastics, environmental stressors and global change. 


The end of summer brings the Orkney International Science Festival, one of the world's longest-established and most original science festivals. Heriot-Watt scientists will be taking part in talks, lectures, demonstrations, and experiments across the week. 

Meanwhile, at our Edinburgh campus, Doors Open Day and EU Researcher's Night are the highlights of September, with the Lyell Centre taking part in this Scotland-wide initiative to share our research and innovative facilities with the public. 


As part of our Inaugural lecture series, Prof Kockell will discuss his research on coastal heritage, spanning the shores of Orkney and Shetland, to work with European partners and beyond. 

We are also planning events at the Scottish Parliament and House of Commons, with details to follow. 

Some of our academics and researchers will be out and about with Midlothian Science Festival, running workshops and drop-ins at various venues


The premiere of 'Rivers of Belonging', an Oratorio representing the role of rivers in cultural heritage across Europe (COHERE Project, H2020) will take place at the Scottish Storytelling Centre in Edinburgh. 


At the end of the Year of the Sea, we will be hosting a showcase event, celebrating the successes of the year, with prizes awarded to schools, academics and community groups who inspired and engaged in 2018. 

Key information

HW Engage