UCL Energy Institute


Professor Catalina Spataru named new Director of UCL Energy Institute

18 January 2022

We are delighted to announce that Professor Catalina Spataru has been appointed Director of UCL Energy Institute.

Professor Catalina Spataru

Catalina Spataru is Professor in Global Energy and Resources at UCL and the Founder and Head of UCL Island Laboratory, which focuses on sustainable solutions for island nations, artificial islands and coastal areas and how green and blue economy models could help improve human wellbeing and social equity, while reducing environmental risks. 

Since joining UCL in 2010 she has been principal or co-investigator and participated in research projects related to energy system change and energy security, energy futures and policies, circular economy, modelling scenarios, trade-offs between resource use, sustainability indicators, governance; research funded by UKRI, Belmont Forum, including UKRI, JST, QNRF, NSF, BEIS and NRCan, and industry working in collaboration with partners from academia and industry from UK, US, Qatar, Japan, Italy, Brazil, China, Canada, Greece, The Bahamas, Mauritius. 

She is the author of over 60 peer reviewed papers and over 100 technical reports and policy documents, two books, and editor of three.

Catalina’s research interests underline an integrative approach and potential solutions around energy and resource use, climate change resilience, governance of resource use, pathways towards maintaining the physical basis of society and socio-economic values in the long term. This includes leading interdisciplinary research and international collaborations. She is currently the principal investigator for the Belmont funded research Re-Energize Governance of Disasters Risk Reduction and Resilience for Sustainable Development (Re-Energize DR3) which explores through a nexus-informed methodological approach to take quantitative and qualitative data models into actionable insights to help building resilience and enhance societal coping capabilities for before and after disasters caused by climate change. 

She served as Bartlett School of Environment, Energy and Resources EDI Lead and was pivotal in establishing its first agenda. She also had substantial involvement in institutional roles such as Programme Course Director of the Mres in Energy Demand Studies.

Professor Catalina Spataru succeeds previous Energy Institute Director Professor Neil Strachan. We would like to thank Neil for his leadership in his three years as Energy Institute Director. 

Catalina’s response to her appointment:

I am delighted to be appointed as the new Director of Energy Institute. I’m looking forward to working with EI’s teams and collaborate with other universities and industry partners worldwide, to achieve further remarkable solutions to address the current challenges we face” 
To address the complexities, interactions and interdependencies within the energy landscape and its connections with other systems, it requires an interdisciplinary approach. Energy Institute developed a strong portfolio of research and teaching to support policy recommendations and help innovators identify sustainable solutions and at the same time ensure affordability, security”

BSEER Director Prof Neil Strachan said:

I am delighted that Professor Catalina Spataru will be the new Director of the UCL Energy Institute. As a world-leading researcher and educator, she will bring her energy and experience to lead the Institute to new heights as we move into the implementation of the energy transition and towards net zero emissions.”