Strategies for Expanding Universal Access to Electricity Services for Development

Access to electricity is recognized as fundamental to development, and many efforts are under way across developing countries to scale up access, both in terms of providing basic supply and enabling people to move up through the energy tiers. However, it has become apparent that providing a connection to electricity, whether from a grid or off-grid source, does not automatically bring development benefits.

In this paper, we propose that for electricity services to reach those who need them and catalyze development, electrification initiatives should be built on a disaggregated understanding of consumer demand from the bottom-up, exploit the links between electrification and other development sectors and make reliability and affordability of electricity services key considerations.