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Energising the Millennium Development Goals - Setting the Enabling Environment (E- MINDSET) in Southern Africa (E-MINDSET)

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The project aimed to address the disconnect between none inclusion of energy issues into development planning and implementation at both local and national levels. The project was targeting civil society organisations actively involved in energy issues, district level extension and planning personnel, technical personnel of the energy regulatory institutions, and rural and urban poor women and men. The project was being implemented in the following provinces Manica in Mozambique, Southern region Malawi, Eastern Zambia and Manicaland and Zimbabwe respectively. The project developed teaching, planning and decision making toolkits which link energy and mainstream development planning. It also raised awareness on policy implementation to influence resources allocation. To increase energy supply, the project stimulated and promoted uptake of renewable energy technologies where these are technically feasible. The communities in the target communities are now more familiar with the link between energy and MDGs.


  • To the communities the capacity building process was empowering and gave a platform for better appreciation of energy, visioning and demonstration of community empowerment. It gave an appreciation of the role of energy in development planning. Community Based Planning (CBP) helped to put energy into the communities’ development context.
  • The project generated so much influence in government and NGO’s across the region. In Malawi this resulted in the formation of an independent institution to tackle energy issues at grassroots called Mulanje Renewable Energy Agency (MuREA). The energy organisation had been so influential and by the project end at least 11 districts outside the targeted ones wanted the planning process that was followed in Mulanje and Phalombe districts.
  • The innovative and widely disseminated activities resulted in Practical Action being given a direct invitation to present the project on the annual Global Energy Awards event. Through talk shows at grassroots the project received direct enquiries from the public needing assistance to their energy challenges. Through E-discussions an energy discussion blog was created ( and has 80members contributing to it.
  • The innovative energy project delivery model that has been demonstrated in the few selected wards and districts, Practical Action and its partners are of the opinion that it was not done to sufficient levels to enable the process to roll out on its own. Through monitoring and evaluation, experience with the project show that 9 out of the 25 wards had taken off by themselves.

Lessons learned

  • Through capacity building, training and dissemination activities, the project managed to empower more than 1,5 million people in Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
  • It enhanced understanding and mainstreaming of energy into development planning starting from the ward level (i.e. the grassroots) to the district, provincial and national level.
  • It enabled rural district councils to have first hand information about community needs on energy in the context of development planning thus giving service providers an opportunity to better understand and serve the communities. Last updated: 19.07.2010

Partners and coordinator

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Intermediate Technology Development Group Ltd
United Kingdom
Contact point: 
Tinashe Darlington Nhete
00263 4 776631


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In brief

01/01/2007 to 31/12/2009
Contract number: 

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