Master of Sustainable Energy & Master of Sustainable Energy (Management)

The Master of Sustainable Energy (Management) is one of the few programs in the world that offers an interdisciplinary education – with direct industry contact and practical experience.

As a student, you will gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of energy systems, responsible business practice and contemporary energy challenges: How do we solve the “wicked” energy challenge facing society – affordable, reliable and sustainable energy for all?

Open to students from different backgrounds (bi-annual intake), courses are taught in week-intensive blocks. The cohorts are a mix of mature domestic and international students, and you will also learn from fellow students' knowledge and work experience.

Read more about the Master of Sustainable Energy
Read more about the Master of Sustainable Energy (Management)

Hear from a graduate

Graduate Felipe Hodar is now leading a new department for sustainability in a large energy company in Chile. He shares his experience studying at UQ.

Why study the Master of Sustainable Energy/Master of Sustainable Energy (Management)?

Time is more than ripe for a new type of energy professionals – those who understand various disciplinary tools and perspectives and are able to communicate effectively.

As a student, you will be educated to address complex problems across a range of disciplines. This will enable you to develop problem solving skills and progress to leadership positions across the energy sector.

You will learn to understand the complex nature of energy generation, distribution and supply plus the crucial role of finance, technology and regulation in business development and project management. Not least, you will grasp the critical importance of social license to operate and shared value in the dynamic socio-economic energy landscape and obtain a deep understanding of innovation, sustainability and risk management.

Leadership modules are embedded in each intensive course. These are delivered via webinars covering topics such as communication, team dynamics, negotiation, conflict and strategic decision-making to dress you for success in leadership and management positions.

All courses contain a real-world assignment that is tackled in groups, and small group discussions, debates and group presentations are also run in class to maximise learning and the ability to work in teams (all exams are individual).

Representing the new breed of energy professional, you will be working towards creating a better energy future for all and you will:

  • learn directly from leading academics, researchers and national as well as international practitioners in the field
  • study alongside passionate and talented individuals from a wide range of academic and industry backgrounds
  • take part in multi-disciplinary and integrated approaches to consider local, regional, national and global energy systems as well as drivers for change
  • fast-track your career with an internationally-focussed program enhancing skills, knowledge and confidence to embark on new and advanced career pathways in or outside Australia

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What is the difference between the Master of Sustainable Energy and the Master of Sustainable Energy (Management)?

The Master of Sustainable Energy (MSE) is a 24-unit program that can be completed in 18 months (full-time) or over a longer period for eligible part-time students. 

The Master of Sustainable Energy (Management) adds eight units of management courses to the MSE (an additional semester of full-time study), providing a two-year program (full-time equivalent). 

The additional management courses where you will learn enhanced management and communication skills from UQ's Business School can be undertaken at the beginning (preferred) or the end of the core MSE program. 

If you are not sure which program to study and want to know more, please contact us to discuss the two programs.

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Professional project

When you undertake your professional project, you can apply what you have learned focusing on a real-world problem that you choose. The professional project is one semester (full-time study). Recent professional projects have included:

  • Insights from Australian LNG export industry: Considerations for the design of the National Hydrogen Strategy.
  • Relevance of District Cooling Systems (DSC) in the Australian climate strategy: A case study of Sydney.
  • Mapping Opportunities to Support Developing Countries’ Energy Transitions.
  • Stakeholder perceptions of an Arrow Energy community engagement activity – A case study of the Heart of Australia Program.
  • Conditions for the feasibility of CO2-to-methanol: A Case Study of Chile.

Some projects are naturally linked to industry and may require you to work in the organisation in question for a period of time, which will give you some valuable practical experience.

"UQ Masters of Sustainable Energy students have embraced the opportunity to work with AACo on identifying opportunities for improvement within our electricity supply and generation. The students conducted themselves very professionally, inserting themselves seamlessly into the flow of operations in a way that has caused minimal disruption to our day-to-day working. Their attention to detail and a willingness to better understand the AACo supply chain has assisted in the  positive outcomes for the project. This collaboration has offered AACo the opportunity to scrutinise aspects of our operations which we would otherwise not have had cause to understand better."

Sarah Day, AACo Sustainability Manager

Here's what student Federico Lagos Izquierdo said about his professional project (Semester 1, 2020):

"My thesis is about the Lady Elliot Island Eco-Resort (LEIER) energy system, its pathway to a cleaner energy system, and feasibility to replicate this system into other remote islands. Once the opportunity to work with an island of the Great Barrier Reef and its renewable energy system presented itself, I instantly felt attracted to work on it. 

I am interested in stand-alone microgrids, and I felt this project would be beneficial to learn more about these systems. So far, I can say that it has met my expectations of learning about the critical aspects of the system and different technologies that can be applied. Besides, the interviews and meetings with supervisors, staff of the LEIER and other people involved in similar systems have given me essential insights into the project."

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Career opportunities

Graduates with the skills and expertise offered in this program are in high demand as the world is transitioning to a low-carbon energy future. This requires multidisciplinary employees who can work across disciplines and cultures – at a local, regional, national and international level.

Our graduates typically go on to work in senior or leadership roles in corporations, governments, NGOs, small businesses and start-ups (or start their own business). This degree will also equip you with the skills to enter the academic world and study a PhD.

Graduates have gone to work in a wide range of organisations such as Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), Tesla, Stanwell, Australian Energy Market Commission, Arrow Energy, Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), BP, Ramboll, Aurecon, Queensland Government (Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy), Australian Energy Regulator (AER), Aurora Energy Research and Gasco (Chile).

Some examples of their roles are: Business development manager, project advisor, energy markets and policy specialist, senior analyst, energy policy and regulatory manager and environmental strategy advisor.

UQ is ranked in the top-50 universities in the world for employability (QS Graduate Employability Ranking 2019). And during your studies, you will have access to a number of career resources offered by our Faculty Employability Team. You will have the opportunity to attend industry presentations, book appointments with career consultants and take part in employability workshops on how to write a successful CV and so forth.

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Field trips

Each semester is usually kicked off with a field trip (of 1-2 days' duration) for new students to experience different energy infrastructures in Queensland such as the NRG Gladstone coal power station and UQ’s research station on Heron Island run mainly on solar power.

These trips are also a great way for new on-campus students to get to know each other and discuss their knowledge of energy before their first week-intensive course starts.

Students exploring Heron Island, UQ’s research station based at the southern end of The Great Barrier Reef. The station is run mostly on solar power.


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Hear from our students

Carolina Clerc"The Master of Sustainable Energy strengthened my knowledge of energy solutions to address the main challenges of climate change. The diverse backgrounds of teachers and students allowed for an enriching discussion with a broad perspective. I am grateful to have been able to learn from such experienced professionals and researchers. 


The Master’s has promoted networking with industry experts, which allowed me to integrate into the energy field in Australia to support the transition of the agricultural sector towards energy efficiency and renewable technologies. This experience has empowered me to continue working for a sustainable energy future.“

Carolina Clerc, Energy Research Officer
Queensland Farmer's Federation


"I like finding solutions and preferably on a broader scale, and I can imagine working in a partnership between countries. Energy challenges are complex and need to be addressed from a global perspective as well."

Read more about Aaron's experience.



Aaron Martinez, Energy student


"The Master of Sustainable Energy allowed me to completely change my career, without having to start back at the beginning. It provided engaging and challenging content from experienced industry leaders, enabling me to network with industry and stay well informed about our rapidly evolving energy system.

The Master’s allowed me to connect with students from numerous backgrounds and has given me not only great professional networks, but also lifelong friendships. It has meant I’ve been able to transition into the sustainable energy industry with the knowledge, expertise and experience needed to effectively manage the energy transition."

Nicole Heesh, Senior Policy Officer, Renewable Energy Zones
Queensland Government – Department of Energy and Public Works (DEPW)

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Teaching modes

Courses are taught in external mode (online) and internal mode (a combination of online learning and in-person activities, appropriate for Brisbane-based students) – for now and in future. Read about preparing to study next semester at UQ.

Each ENGY Part A course is structured in a unique intensive schedule as follows:

  • Self-paced learning of foundation material, via online lectures and activities, in the week leading up to the intensive teaching modules.
  • Attendance and participation (online or on campus) at the intensive teaching modules across 4 days, Tuesday to Friday (9am-5pm Brisbane time each day). See the course calendar on the top right column of this page.
  • Attendance at and participation in an online presentation evening and webinar, in the weeks following the intensive teaching modules.
  • Self-paced completion of remaining assessment.
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Further information

For further information on what you can study, entry requirements and how to apply, view the Future Students website.

For enquiries, please contact:

Dr Tony Heynen
Program Coordinator & Senior Lecturer
Tel: + 61 7 3365 4795

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