Skip to main content
EU Science Hub

Science is not only the foundation of knowledge and progress, but also the promoter of indispensable and irreplaceable values for a sustainable, inclusive and equitable world.

Fabiola Gianotti is Director-General of CERN, Switzerland


Fabiola Gianotti became the first female Director-General of CERN in 2016. She was renewed for a second term of office as of 1st January 2021. 

She received a PhD in experimental particle physics from the University of Milano. Since 1994 she has been a research physicist at CERN. She has worked on several CERN experiments, and been involved in detector R&D and construction, software development and data analysis. 

In particular, she played a major role in the ATLAS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider. From 2009 to 2013, she held the elected position of spokesperson (project leader) for the ATLAS experiment, and had the task of presenting the results on the discovery of the Higgs boson at a seminar at CERN on 4 July 2012.

She has authored or co-authored over 550 publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals. She is a corresponding or foreign associate member of nine Scientific Academies across the world and she has received 13 honorary doctoral degrees. 

For the discovery of the Higgs boson, she shared the Special Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics and the Enrico Fermi Prize of the Italian Physical Society.

She was included among the “Top 100 most inspirational women” by The Guardian newspaper (UK, 2011), ranked 5th in Time magazine’s Personality of the Year (USA, 2012) and included among the “Top 100 most influential women” by Forbes magazine (USA, 2013 and 2017).

  • Country: Italy
  • Organisation: CERN, Switzerland
  • Social media: @cern
  • References: Director-General, CERN
  • Category: Science, research and innovation