UCL Energy Institute


Dr Julia Tomei

Lecturer in Energy, Resources and Development

Bartlett School Env, Energy & Resources

Faculty of the Built Environment

Joined UCL
1st Jul 2012

Research summary

I am currently engaged in a number of projects which focus on various aspects of energy systems in Low and Middle Income countries. 

  •         Sustainable Gas Futures: from microcosm to macrocosm

  •         Decentralised energy networks in Myanmar

  •         Co-designing anaerobic digestion systems for rural fishing communities in Colombia

  •      Understanding the relationship between gender and energy use and efficiency co-benefits in Mexico and the UK

Teaching summary

I currently lead a module on Resource Governance in the Global South for the MSc Sustainable Resources.  


University College London
Other Postgraduate qualification (including professional), ATQ03 - Recognised by the HEA as a Fellow | 2019
University College London
Doctorate, Doctor of Philosophy | 2014
University College London/Imperial College
Other higher degree, Master of Science | 2005
University of Leeds
First Degree, Bachelor of Science | 2002


I am a social scientist whose research focuses on the livelihood, social and political dimensions of energy in the Global South. Facilitating access to modern energy services has become a key arena for international governance. I am interested in how these policy initiatives translate into local level outcomes, particularly in light of the vast resources that are being spent on interventions to widen access to modern energy services. I have three key areas of interest: first, I focus on energy equity, justice, and the provision of modern energy services to the poor. Here, I view energy as an enabler for better lives rather than as an end in itself, and my research investigates the differential impacts of energy within and between households, communities and nations. Second, my research examines local and community engagement with renewable energy technologies, and how energy interventions can be tailored to meet the needs of the end users. Finally, I am interested in the governance of bioenergy and biofuels, and in the sustainability outcomes for local communities in producer countries. My research draws on qualitative and quantitative social research methods, which I have applied in Europe, Latin America, Africa, Asia and Europe.  Since 2017, I have been Chair of the UCL Energy and Development Group, and I am a member of the Supergen Bioenergy Hub’s Core Management Group.