Energy Systems Short Course

Learn skills in analysing the financial, technical, and environmental performance of energy projects.


The Energy Systems Short Course teaches skills in analysing the financial, technical, and environmental performance of energy projects. The course centres on practical, hands on, modelling exercises. Participants develop their own spreadsheet models, and learn how to answer questions such as: Is a proposed wind farm or gas turbine a good investment? What is the probability that it will earn a commercial rate of return? What is the best financing structure for the project?

The assessment for the course will be an assignment on the second case study, completed over two weeks following the final class. A certificate of completion will be issued to participants. All classes will be scheduled outside of business hours, including Saturdays.

Participant numbers for the short course are kept deliberately small, comprising approximately 20 industry participants and 20 graduate students.

Eligible participants for the Short Course include industry participants from MEInetwork20 partner organisations, and graduate students from the University of Melbourne. The course is free of charge to University students and preference is given to final year PhD students, but all graduates are encouraged to apply.


  • The fundamentals of finance
  • The Levelised Cost of Energy (LCOE)
  • Sensitivity analyses
  • Tools for financial analysis under uncertainty
  • Problem-based learning via investment case studies


Dr. John Burgess is a chemical engineer with extensive industrial and research experience. This includes a long and distinguished career at BHP, where he rose to senior executive level. He was also recently the Chair of the CSIRO Energy Advisory Committee for a number of years. John is an Honorary Professorial Fellow at the University of Melbourne, an Adjunct Professor at the University of Queensland, and a Fellow of the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE).

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