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2014 Higgs Symposium - New Horizons in Particle Cosmology


The second Higgs Symposium on Theoretical Physics will take place in Edinburgh from Monday 30th June to Wednesday 2nd July 2014, and will focus on particle cosmology.

The Standard Model of Cosmology is now on a solid observational foundation. But the empirical success of the model forces us to consider its outstanding fundamental problems: What drives the current expansion of the Universe to accelerate? Did a period of Cosmological Inflation set the initial conditions for the observable Universe? What is the nature of the Dark Matter which moulds the formation of structure and how is it connected to Particle Physics? Is Einstein’s Theory of Gravity correct on all scales or will we have to modify it on cosmological scales?

In the second Higgs Symposium on Theoretical Physics we will focus on addressing these issues by bringing together experts in Cosmology and Particle Physics to discuss our current knowledge and see where new ideas might take us and what we can learn from observations. The successful discovery of the Higgs Boson at CERN reassures us that scalar fields do exist and gives support to models which make use of its cousins, such as the Inflation and Quintessence, while the recent BICEP2 results suggest that the simplest Inflationary models are right. But what can we learn and can it be linked to Particle Physics? Cosmological measurements still provide us with the only empirical evidence for Dark Matter, but how far away is a detection in the laboratory? And since Cosmology relies on a theory of gravity which needs to be tested, where will these tests lead us?

To address these issues, the meeting will take as its basis three topics:

1. Scalar Fields in Cosmology: Inflation & Dark Energy

2. Modifying Gravity

3. Dark Matter

Talk Schedule

A preliminary talk schedule can be downloaded from Resources link on the right hand side of this page.


Registration is available through the link at the bottom of this page.

There is no Registration Fee for PhD students, otherwise the Registration Fee is £75 GBP.

Registration is extended to Friday 20th June 2014.


The venue for the Higgs Symposium is the historic Royal Observatory Edinburgh, located a few miles south of and overlooking central Edinburgh. A Google map of the location is at


Edinburgh has a wide range of hotels and Guest Houses in the city centre and beyond. A list of accommodation can be found at

We recommend early booking of accommodation as the Summer is a busy period in Edinburgh.

Conference Dinner

The Conference Dinner is on Tuesday 1st July 2014 at the Dynamic Earth Centre in central Edinburgh.

Dinner for Registered participants is paid for by the Higgs Centre. Additional tickets for guests may be available.

Details for the dinner venue can be found at


The Higgs Symposium is funded by the Higgs Centre for Theoretical Physics.


2014 Higgs Symposium - New Horizons in Particle Cosmology

Higgs Centre Workshop
Royal Observatory, Edinburgh
Blackford Hill


Key speakers

  • Oliver BUCHMUELLER (Imperial)
  • Marco CIRELLI (CEA Saclay)
  • Catherine HEYMANS (Edinburgh)
  • Bhuvnesh JAIN (UPenn)
  • Rocky KOLB (UChicago)
  • Hiranya PEIRIS (UCL)