1st Edition

Building Innovation Capabilities for Sustainable Industrialisation Renewable Electrification in Developing Economies

    292 Pages 22 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    292 Pages 22 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book argues that renewable electrification in developing countries provides important opportunities for local economic development, but new pathways are required for turning these opportunities into successful reality.

    Building Innovation Capabilities for Sustainable Industrialisation offers a novel input into the debate on development of capabilities for sustainable industrialisation and delivers key insights for both researchers and policy makers when it comes to the question of how to increase the economic co-benefits of renewables expansion. The chapters in the book use a tailored analytical framework in their studies of renewable electrification efforts in Kenya and other countries in sub-Saharan Africa. They draw on a mix of project, sector and country level case studies to address questions such as: What capabilities are developed through on-going renewable electrification projects in developing economies? How can the expansion of renewable electrification be supported in a way that also encourages sustainable economic development? What role do international linkages (South-South and North-South) play and what role should they play in the greening of energy systems in developing economies? The authors provide a new understanding of how green transformation and sustainable industrialisation can be combined, highlighting the opportunities and constraints for local capability building and the scope for local policy action.

    This book will be of great interest to students and scholars of development studies, energy studies, sustainability and sustainable development, as well as practitioners and policy makers working in development organisations and national governments.

    The Open Access version of this book, available at http://www.taylorfrancis.com/books/e/9781003054665, has been made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives 4.0 license.


    Chapter 1: Renewable electrification and sustainable industrialisation, Rebecca Hanlin, Margrethe Holm Andersen, Rasmus Lema and Charles Nzila; Chapter 2: Towards a conceptual framework: Renewable electrification and sustainable industrialisation, Margrethe Holm Andersen and Rasmus Lema; Chapter 3: Challenges and opportunities for the expansion of renewable electrification in Kenya, Mbeo Ogeya, Philip Osano, Ann Kingiri and Josephat Mongare Okemwa; Chapter 4: Centralised and decentralised deployment models: Is small beautiful?, Ulrich Elmer Hansen, Cecilia Gregersen, Faith H. Wandera, Nina Kotschenreuther and Rebecca Hanlin; Chapter 5: Understanding the diffusion of small wind turbines in Kenya: A technological innovation systems approach, Faith H. Wandera; Chapter 6: Are the capabilities for renewable electrification in place? A Kenyan firm-level survey, Charles Nzila and Michael Korir; Chapter 7: Interactive learning and capability-building in critical projects, Rebecca Hanlin and Josephat Mongare Okemwa; Chapter 8: Interactive learning spaces: Insights from two wind power megaprojects, Cecilia Gregersen and Birgitte Gregersen; Chapter 9: Moving forward? Building foundational capabilities in Kenyan and Tanzanian off-grid solar PV firms, Joni Karjalainen and Rob Byrne; Chapter 10: Chinese green energy projects in sub-Saharan Africa: Are there co-benefits? Padmasai Lakshmi Bhamidipati, Cecilia Gregersen, Ulrich Elmer Hansen, Julian Kirchherr and Rasmus Lema; Chapter 11: Local Content and Capabilites: Policy process and stakeholders in Kenya, Ann Kingiri and Josephat Mongare Okemwa; Chapter 12: Renewable electrification pathways and sustainable industrialisation: lessons learned and their implications, Rasmus Lema, Margrethe Andersen, Rebecca Hanlin and Charles Nzila


    Rasmus Lema, DPhil in Development Studies (Sussex), Associate Professor, Department of Business and Management, Aalborg University and Senior Visiting Associate Professor, College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg. Principle Investigator of the IREK project.

    Margrethe Holm Andersen, PhD in Social Science (Aalborg), Senior Advisor in Innovation and Development, Department of Politics and Society, Aalborg University. Member of the IREK research team and the IREK management group.

    Rebecca Hanlin, PhD in Science and Technology Studies (Edinburgh), Non-Resident Fellow at the African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS), Innovation and Development Specialist for AfricaLics, Visiting Fellow at a number of universities in Europe and Africa. Member of the IREK research team and the IREK management group.

    Charles Nzila, PhD in Applied Science (Gent), Senior Lecturer at Moi University. Co-Project Investigator of the IREK project and member of the IREK management group.

    Capacity mobilisation and capacity building are central to achieving the goals of the climate regime of the Paris Agreement. However, capacity building initiatives have largely failed as they were hitherto not sufficiently focused on local agendas and self-reliance. This timely book provides useful guidance for change in this respect. Putting local actors first, it provides fresh perspectives to the debate about the economic co-benefits of climate action, especially business development, jobs and technological learning. Focusing on insights from renewable electrification experiences in East Africa, the authors provide compelling arguments and guidance for ambitious policies and capacity-building initiatives to capture the gains from the greening of energy systems. It is a must read for scholars and policymakers who are interested in local determination and participation in the transition to low carbon energy regimes.
    Youba Sokona, Vice-Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)

    Innovation and Renewable Electrification in Kenya (IREK) project’s book on Building innovation capabilities for sustainable industrialization is a great insight of the capability development in renewable energy processes in East Africa and the challenges faced in renewable energy access and adoption in today’s fast changing and evolving East African market. The book provides excellent advice on how to build effective and resilient renewable energy systems that create manufacturing jobs and whose deployments generate highly skilled service employment that can contribute to the economic growth of the East African states. A book well worth reading by academic researchers as well as policy makers and practitioners with an interest in renewable energy pathways and related discussions on capabilities for sustainable industrialization.
    Dr. Edward Mungai, CEO Kenya Climate Innovation Group

    The effective development and diffusion of green technologies is critical to development in sub-Saharan Africa. The major strength of this book is that it combines a macro-level perspective of national and international dynamics with a micro-level focus on renewable energy projects to unpack this process. The authors show that innovation at various levels is a central prerequisite for development and diffusion that attains both environmental and economic benefits associated with the diffusion of solar and wind power technologies. Drawing on a novel framework combining technological capabilities, global value chains and innovation systems, this book will make an important contribution to theoretical debates about pathways of diffusion in green sectors. More importantly, the application of this framework to detailed renewable electrification case studies allows the authors to provide deep insights and concrete advice for policies aimed at creating economic development from sustainability transition in low- and middle-income countries.
    Xiaolan FU, Director of the Technology and Management Centre for Development at Oxford University.

    This book addresses two aspects of long-term development in African countries. One of these is about the expansion of renewable electricity production. The other, much broader, is about change in the sectoral structure of production in the economy – a source of increased employment, productivity growth and higher incomes, but also, beyond that, a basis for achieving the multi-dimensional goals of sustainable industrialisation. Drawing on a wealth of case studies, the authors suggest that the expansion of renewable electrification, sometimes impressive, has made only limited contributions to structural change. Behind this, they argue, lie limited activities to develop the necessary technological and managerial capabilities. They throw down a challenge to explore new kinds of policy action in different kinds of context.
    Martin Bell, Emeritus Professor, Science Policy Research Unit, University of Sussex

    The great potential of Africa can only be realized through big scale job creation based upon industrialization and technological development. This book helps us understand, how this can be combined with economic, social and ecological sustainability. Through a series of case studies, it gives insights in how green electrification, based on technologies developed outside Africa, can be implemented in such a way that it helps building local capabilities fundamental for sustainable industrialization. It is a book worth reading for scholars and policy makers.
    Bengt-Åke Lundvall, Emeritus Professor, Aalborg University and Lund University.