Dow Centre for Sustainable Engineering Innovation
School of Chemical Engineering


Professor Eric McFarland

Professor Eric McFarland
Senior Consultant

From January 2014 till December 2015 Professor Eric McFarland was the inaugural Director of UQ’s Dow Centre for Sustainable Engineering Innovation. During his period at the Dow Centre he was particularly interested in carbon-free production of energy and chemicals using nuclear processes, carbon dioxide reduction technologies and cost-effective, low-carbon dioxide, catalytic processes for methane conversion.  January 2016 he returned full time to the University of California, Santa Barbara but he will retain collaborative projects with UQ and the Dow Centre.

Eric studied nuclear engineering at U.C. Berkeley and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) where he received his Ph.D and later joined the Nuclear Engineering Department faculty.  He moved to the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) where his research focus shifted to chemical reaction phenomena and catalysis. Prior to his move to The University of Queensland in 2014, he was a Professor of Chemical Engineering at UCSB. Eric has worked extensively with industry and started and led several technology companies based on university research, among them Symyx Technologies and Gas Reaction Technologies.  Eric also studied medicine and received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School and practiced emergency medicine part-time until 2005; he has continued to serve as a volunteer physician for several relief agencies.