Dr Gianotti, an Honorary Professor associated with the School's Experimental Physics Group, will take up the five-year post on 1 January 2016.
“It is a great honour and responsibility for me to be selected as the next CERN Director-General following 15 outstanding predecessors. CERN is a centre of scientific excellence, and a source of pride and inspiration for physicists from all over the world. CERN is also a cradle for technology and innovation, a fount of knowledge and education, and a shining, concrete example of worldwide scientific cooperation and peace.
"It is the combination of these four assets that renders CERN so unique, a place that makes better scientists and better people. I will fully engage myself to maintain CERN’s excellence in all its attributes, with the help of everybody, including CERN Council, staff and users from all over the world.” Dr Fabiola Gianotti
"On behalf of the whole particle physics group in Edinburgh, as well as the School and the University, I would like to give Fabiola our heartiest congratulations. She is one of the most distinguished and respected physicists of her time, and we know she will do an excellent job as the next Director General of CERN." Prof. Peter Clarke, Particle Physics Experiment group, University of Edinburgh
Dr Gianotti was leader of the ATLAS experiment collaboration from March 2009 to February 2013, covering the period in which the LHC experiments ATLAS and CMS announced the long-awaited discovery of the so-called Higgs boson, recognised by the award of the Nobel Prize to François Englert and Peter Higgs in 2013. She is a member of many international committees, and has received many prestigious awards. She will be the first woman to hold the position of CERN Director-General.
In August 2013, Dr Gianotti was appointed an Honorary Professor in the School, working with Edinburgh staff and PhD students based at CERN and visiting the School for specialist lectures.