People Places Planet

Making ideas work for a better world

Discover the University of Edinburgh’s world leading circular economy expertise which will help you develop innovative ideas to deliver solutions to the global climate crisis, one of the world’s biggest challenges.

Learn about our experts and discover the ways we’ve been working in collaboration to improve the environment for all our communities.

Edinburgh Innovations is the University of Edinburgh’s commercialisation service. We bring University of Edinburgh research to industry, working to identify ideas with value, and facilitating the process of bringing them to life in real-world applications.

We make ideas work for a better world

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and events, all designed to help your business deliver solutions to the world’s
biggest challenges.

Energy-efficient embedded processors

A research project from the University of Edinburgh has created energy-efficient technology that is now included in more than 2 billion processors every year; benefitting the planet and consumers.

Embedded processors are an integral part of our everyday lives; from smartphones to wireless communications and biomedical devices. Through this research project, we have developed a processor that delivers higher performance across this broad range of devices along with greater energy efficiency and enhanced battery life.

The Circular Economy Centre

Scotland’s centre for circular economy expertise

The University of Edinburgh is a leading hub for circular knowledge and innovation, through the Circular Economy Centre and the Edinburgh Earth Initiative.

We work together with businesses and other organisations to accelerate the transition to a circular economy by providing access to world-leading research, education and innovation support.


We work closely with our partners to:

  • foster effective collaboration between academia and industry
  • help businesses embrace circular economy opportunities and benefits by showcasing the best examples of innovation in action
  • engage academics, students, business and others to identify and respond to key challenges and opportunities in the transition to a circular economy
  • enable our clients and partners to achieve transformational change in the circular economy by supporting the development and commercialisation of ideas through our end-to-end innovation support and exceptional networks

Wherever you want to go in the circular economy, we will help you to get there by providing first-class research and innovation support, education and skills development opportunities, and networking prospects. Together we can help your business to thrive over the long term and deliver a positive impact locally, regionally and globally.

The Edinburgh Earth Initiative

The Edinburgh Earth Initiative - our response to the climate crisis. Drawing on strengths from across the University and working with our global partners, we will deliver ambitious solutions for a future that effectively manages and mitigates the effects of climate change.

Discover Our People

Discover the University of Edinburgh’s innovative capability led by an exceptional team.

Professor Jamie Cross

Jamie is a Professor of Social and Economic Anthropology, specialising in the study of energy, technology, and economy in the global south. His research also involves the production of physical and digital objects that probe the material politics of our energy futures through collaborations with visual artists, filmmakers, and designers. Read about his Solar What?! solar devices and repair and repurpose work during the pandemic.

Professor Jason Love

Jason Love is Professor of Molecular Inorganic Chemistry at the School of Chemistry at the University of Edinburgh. He has diverse research interests centred on chemical sustainability that includes advancing metal resource circularity through the study of extraction and recycling. Read about innovative solutions for sustainable electronics including extracting gold from e-waste and using a whisky co-product.

Professor Louise Horsfall

Professor Louise Horsfall, Chair of Sustainable Biotechnology at the University of Edinburgh, is interested in applying synthetic biology to improve the sustainability of biological processes and products, in particular how these areas might make manufacturing more resource-efficient and help move us towards a more circular economy. Read about her work with Diageo and opinion on circularising the bioeconomy.

Dr Katriona Edlmann

Katriona Edlmann is the Chancellor’s Fellow in Energy within the School of Geosciences. Katriona has 25 years’ experience researching the secure and sustainable utilisation of the subsurface for low-carbon energy applications including carbon capture and storage, hydrogen energy storage and geothermal operations. Read more.

Professor Sean Smith

Sean is Professor of Future Construction and Director of the Centre for Future Infrastructure, based at the University of Edinburgh. He has held previous posts leading in sustainable construction, construction innovation and building performance and has managed major projects involving low carbon construction technologies. His research impacts have resulted in multiple awards due to the positive impact on sustainability, low carbon construction growth and society. Read more.

Professor Joyce Tait

Joyce is Co-Director of the Innogen Institute and works in the Global Academy of Agriculture and Food Security, both at the University of Edinburgh. She is currently working on the circular economy and the bioeconomy, responsible innovation and regulartion/innovation interactions. Read more.

Professor Alan Raybould

Alan is Professor of Innovation in Life Sciences. His research focuses on the use of science to inform decision-making, particularly improving the regulation of new agriculture and food products. He is a member of the Advisory Committee on Releases to the Environment (ACRE) that provides statutory advice to the UK Government on the potential risks to human health and the environment from the release and marketing of genetically modified organisms and non-native species used for biological control.

Our track record

Discover our successes. Building on our world leading research, Edinburgh Innovations continues to facilitate targeted solutions to combat this global crisis.

Case Study 
Energy-efficient embedded processors
Data, AI & robotics
People, Places and Planet
Case Study 
Are all carbon offsets created equal?
People, Places and Planet
06 Apr 2022
News 
MSc students have the energy to solve industry challenges
Energy
People, Places and Planet
Case Study 
Post-pandemic business travel, commuting and home working
Business continuity
People, Places and Planet
Sustainability
Case Study 
Douglas Martin MiAlgae
MiAlgae: fish-free omega-3
Biotechnology
Circular economy
People, Places and Planet
Startups and spinouts
09 Mar 2022
Opinion 
Innovative solutions for sustainable electronics
People, Places and Planet
Sustainability
Case Study 
Sunamp: next generation thermal energy storage
Energy
People, Places and Planet
Startups and spinouts
Sustainability
Case Study 
Group of students from Students as Change Agents (SAChA)
Students as change agents
Data, AI & robotics
People, Places and Planet
Sustainability
Case Study 
Mining the scrapheap
People, Places and Planet
Sustainability
Case Study 
Repair and repurposing for pandemic resilience
Energy
People, Places and Planet
Case Study 
Geological hydrogen storage
Data, AI & robotics
Energy
People, Places and Planet
Sustainability
Case Study 
Academic expertise helps government on the journey to net-zero
Energy
People, Places and Planet
Sustainability
Case Study 
Creating valuable metals from electronic waste
Biotechnology
Circular economy
People, Places and Planet
Case Study 
Bowl of vanilla icecream with sprinkles
Bacteria serves tasty solution to plastic crisis
Biotechnology
People, Places and Planet
Sustainability
Case Study 
The future of transistors, solar cells and LEDs made from whisky by-products
Circular economy
Food and drink
People, Places and Planet
Sustainability
Case Study 
Re-thinking the circular economy
Animals & Agriculture
People, Places and Planet
Sustainability
Case Study 
Solar What?!
Circular economy
Energy
People, Places and Planet
Startups and spinouts
Sustainability

Contact Us

John Jeffrey

Head of Business Development at the College of Science and Engineering