The Superpower Institute

The Superpower Institute's purpose is to help Australia seize the extraordinary economic opportunities of the post-carbon world.

With unparalleled renewable energy resources and our 'clever country' scientific and engineering capabilities, Australia is perfectly positioned to be a superpower in the world of net zero emissions.

Securing Australia's place in a decarbonised global economic order is a once in a century economic opportunity.

Renowned economist Ross Garnaut and economic public policy expert Rod Sims have joined forces through the Superpower Institute, to focus on practical research and policy to unlock this boom. The Institute specialises in the regulatory settings and market incentives needed to make Australia an economic superpower and provides practical knowledge to governments and industry to realise this opportunity.

A net zero Australian economy will reduce global emissions by just over 1%. But if Australia successfully seizes the economic advantage in exporting zero emissions goods, this can create an economic boom larger and more sustained than the mining boom and reduce global emissions by around an additional 7%.


The Superpower Institute board is made up of a group of Australia's leading thinkers, business-people and scientists.


Professor Rod Sims AO

Director / Chair

Rod is a Professor at the Australian National University; Chair of Opera Australia; and Chair of Australia's National Data Advisory Committee. He is also an Expert Adviser to the UK's Competition and Markets Authority, and an Expert Adviser to the Department of Home Affairs Democratic Resilience Task Force. From 2011-March 2022 he was Chair of the ACCC. Prior to that he had a range of senior corporate and government positions, including as Deputy Secretary in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet. From 1988-1990 he was the Principal Economic Adviser to Australia's Prime Minister Bob Hawke.

Professor Ross Garnaut AC


Ross Garnaut AC is an Emeritus Professor in Economics at ANU and an Emeritus Professor in Business and Economics at the University of Melbourne. Ross was the principal economic adviser to Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke from 1983 to 1985, and Australian Ambassador to China from 1985 to 1988. He was awarded a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) in 2017 for work on climate change and energy.

Susannah Powell

Director / Company Secretary

Susannah Powell has extensive experience in energy technology and policy. At Melbourne Energy Institute she co-ordinated research programs across disciplines including engineering, law and economics. More recently she has worked on the decarbonisation of industrial processes in her role as Head of Zero Carbon Futures at ZEN Energy, and is an MBA Candidate at Melbourne Business School.

Dr Lauren Burns


Lauren Burns has twelve years experience working in small agile start-ups, large OEM and academia in aircraft technology & product development, with a special interest in decarbonising aviation. She has significant strengths in program management, stakeholder relations, supply chain partnerships, team building, technology R&D and business case development.

Dr. Gabrielle Kuiper


Dr. Gabrielle Kuiper is an energy, sustainability and climate change professional with over 20 years' experience. She currently consults on strategy to decarbonise oil and gas and in Australia, and has held senior executive or senior advisory energy-related positions in the Office of the Australian Prime Minister, the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC), the NSW Government and at the Energy Security Board.

Professor Mike Sandiford


Professor Mike Sandiford is a geologist whose work builds Australia's understanding of resource endowment relevant to a net-zero energy and industrial transition. Mike was Chair of Geology at The University of Melbourne 2000 to 2020 and now holds a position as Redmond Barry distinguished Professor Emeritus. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science.

Simon Holmes å Court


Simon Holmes à Court is an Australian businessman, energy analyst, clean tech investor, climate philanthropist, Director of the Smart Energy Council and the Australian Environmental Grantmakers Network and writes regularly about the transformation of Australia's energy sector. He is the founder and convenor of Climate 200.


The Superpower Institute is a not for profit and is initially focussing on:

  1. Providing roadmaps to governments on how to secure the economic benefits of the post-carbon world.
  2. Providing open data in the areas of methane and the National Electricity Market to ensure accountability and measurement of these critical carbon emissions.
  3. Building coalitions with industry and governments to fast-track Australia's superpower economic status.

We believe that Australia stands on a precipice, and the nation's growth and wealth depends on harnessing the economic advantages in the transformation to a decarbonised world.

The Superpower Institute has already started work on a number of key projects focussing on open and auditable data, and changing the economic narrative in Australia.

National Press Club Address - Realising Australia’s economic and climate opportunities


Professor Rod Sims AO, Chair of the Superpower Institute and Professor Ross Garnaut AC, Director of the Superpower Institute addressed the National Press Club of Australia on the 14th February 2024.

National Emissions Monitoring Roadmap


This roadmap will outline how Australia can regain our greenhouse gas measurement world leadership to benefit our economy and climate.

Rod Sims: SA Industry Climate Change Conference speech


South Australia’s economy will be a huge beneficiary from the transition to net zero emissions. South Australia’s Industry Climate Change Conference, Adelaide Convention Centre, 21 April, 2023.



Australia’s leading thinker about climate and energy policy offers a road map for progress, covering energy, transport, agriculture, the international scene and more.

Superpower Transformation


This new book outlines evidence that stronger and earlier action on climate change would be good for jobs and incomes.



A tool to improve public understanding of the market, build better energy literacy and to help facilitate a more informed national discussion on Australia’s energy transition.



A platform for understanding Australia's methane emissions that will foster consensus among researchers, policy makers and industry, and provide actionable insights that drive change.

South Australia’s Green Industrial Transition Roadmap


This roadmap will outline how South Australia’s economy can be a huge beneficiary from the transition to net zero emissions.