Dr Tony Heynen

Senior Lecturer/Program Coordinator

School of Chemical Engineering
Faculty of Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology
+61 7 336 54795


Dr Tony Heynen is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Chemical Engineering and Program Coordinator for UQ's Sustainable Energy postgraduate programs, which develop change-makers to lead the clean energy transition. Tony has responsibility for coordinating the program and its professional research projects, plus teaching into the Energy & Development and Energy Investment & Finance courses, amongst others.

Tony pursues cross-disciplinary research at the intersection of energy and sustainability across three major themes:

  • Strategies to achieve Net Zero emissions targets and sustainable legacy outcomes, including for past and future mega-events such as the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
  • Energy access issues (and sustainable solutions) in remote and “Base of the Pyramid” communities - including in Timor-Leste, Papua New Guinea and India, where he examined the business models of social enterprises.
  • Innovations in postgraduate teaching and learning, centred on the pedagogy of Sustainability Leadership, which have earned him a number of awards.

Tony has a strong operational background: he is a Chartered Professional Engineer with extensive management experience in the resources and consulting sectors, including as Country Manager for Italian energy company Eni in Timor-Leste. This gives him strong attributes when engaging with stakeholders and communities, including authenticity, diplomacy and leadership.

Research Impacts

Impact and connections with stakeholders and decision-makers are the main motivations for Tony's research endeavours, and a core measure of his success.

In particular, he has forged strong collaborative relationships with Technical University Munich and the University of Lausanne through an Erasmus+ mobility grant in 2023. Tony is currently developing research partnerships with these universities to examine the sustainability and legacy of hosting mega-events such as the Olympics. This has built on his early 2023 work that produced a sustainability assessment tool to evaluate the composition of Climate Positive strategies for the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Within the Energy Poverty field, Tony has used his research to inform discussions with government and business stakeholders. In India, this resulted in improved transparency regarding energy access for “Base of the Pyramid” consumers. In Timor-Leste, Tony's research suggested a number of recommendations to stimulate greater energy services in communities. In Papua New Guinea, Tony led a train-the-trainer program that provided youth leaders with the skills and techniques to engage with communities about energy needs and aspirations, contributing to a more democratic development process.

Tony’s research and engagement translates into the continual improvement of UQ’s Sustainable Energy postgraduate programs. For example, Tony's engagement with Ergon Energy over a number of years has resulted in students working on real-world projects on the energy transition in remote Queensland locations, with the best solutions presented back to Ergon Energy. This results in an improved student experience and greater industry relevancy.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Queensland
  • Masters (Coursework) of Business Administration, National University of Singapore
  • Masters (Coursework) of Engineering, University of Melbourne
  • Postgraduate Diploma, The University of Queensland
  • Bachelor (Honours) of Engineering, The University of Queensland


View all Publications


  • Doctor Philosophy

View all Supervision


Featured Publications

Book Chapter

  • Heynen, Anthony P., Herington, Matthew J., Jacobson, Craig B., Sar, Lilly P. and Lant, Paul A. (2023). Energy literacy: democratizing energy access initiatives in Papua New Guinea. Energy democracies for sustainable futures. (pp. 157-164) edited by Majia Nadesan, Martin J. Pasqualetti and Jennifer Keahey. London, United Kingdom: Academic Press. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-822796-1.00017-6

Journal Article

Conference Publication

Other Outputs

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision