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A research agenda for a people-centred approach to energy access in the urbanising global south

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journal contribution
posted on 18.08.2017, 09:27 by Vanesa Castan Broto, Lucy Stevens, Emmanuel Ackom, Julia Tomei, Priti Parikh, Iwona Bisaga, Long Seng ToLong Seng To, Josh Kirshner, Yacob Mulugetta
Energy access is typically viewed as a problem for rural areas, but people living in urban settings also face energy challenges that have not received sufficient attention. A revised agenda in research and practice that puts the user and local planning complexities centre stage is needed to change the way we look at energy access in urban areas, to understand the implications of the concentration of vulnerable people in slums and to identify opportunities for planned management and innovation that can deliver urban energy transitions while leaving no one behind. Here, we propose a research agenda focused on three key issues: understanding the needs of urban energy users; enabling the use of context-specific, disaggregated data; and engaging with effective modes of energy and urban governance. This agenda requires interdisciplinary scholarship across the social and physical sciences to support local action and deliver large-scale, inclusive transformations.



  • Social Sciences


  • Geography and Environment

Published in

Nature Energy


CASTAN BROTO, V. ... et al, 2017. A research agenda for a people-centred approach to energy access in the urbanising global south. Nature Energy, 2, pp.776-779.


Springer Nature


AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Publication date



This paper was accepted for publication in the journal Nature Energy and the definitive published version is available at https://doi.org/10.1038/s41560-017-0007-x





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