Digital Utilities

Digital Utilities

Enabling access to essential utility services for low-income populations through digital solutions

Utility services such as energy, water, sanitation, waste management, and transport are essential to life. Our mission is to enable access to affordable, reliable, safe, and sustainable urban utility services for low-income populations through digital solutions and innovative partnerships. In doing so, we also seek to support cities in low- and middle-income countries in their transition to a low-carbon, climate-resilient future.

The Digital Utilities programme enables digital solutions and partnerships between innovators, mobile operators, city governments and state-owned utility service providers to make essential urban utility services more accessible, affordable, reliable, safe, and sustainable. To achieve this objective, the programme engages in:

  • De-risking and catalysing innovative urban utility services;
  • Research and insights;
  • Partnership facilitation and convening of key ecosystem stakeholders; and
  • Technical advice to mobile operators, municipalities, and utility service providers.
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Latest Publications

Électricité de Madagascar – Enabling Access to Electricity through Mobile-enabled Rural Mini-Grids

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Tuesday 19 May 2020 | Case study | Digital Utilities | Energy | English | Madagascar | Resource | Sub-Saharan Africa |

In May 2018, the Mobile for Development (M4D) Utilities Programme awarded EDM a grant to test the commercial viability of providing electricity to off-grid villages in northern Madagascar. EDM constructed solar-hybrid mini-grids in ...

The Value of Pay-as-you-go Solar for Mobile Operators

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Thursday 30 Apr 2020 | Building the financial ecosystem | Digital Utilities | Energy | English | Mobile access and use | Policy and regulation | Report | Research | Sub-Saharan Africa |

This study aims to measure the underlying value that exists in these partnerships for mobile operators by analysing PAYG clients data from five different countries (Uganda, Rwanda, Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, and Zambia) over a 12 month period.

The GSMA Instant Payment Notification (IPN) Hub: Impact and insights from inception to industry transition

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Monday 20 Apr 2020 | Digital Utilities | Energy | English | Innovation fund and grants | Mobile access and use | Mobile Money | Report | Sub-Saharan Africa |

We are pleased to announce the publication of the GSMA Instant Payment Notification (IPN) Hub case study where we explore its impact and our insights since it was piloted in Rwanda in December 2016 until its ongoing transition to the industry.

Digital Solutions for the Urban Poor

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Tuesday 10 Mar 2020 | Digital Utilities | Energy | English | Global and regional studies | Innovation fund and grants | Mobile access and use | Report | Sanitation | South Asia | State of the industry and trends | Sub-Saharan Africa | Water |

Two-thirds of the world’s population will live in cities by 2050, with most urban growth concentrated in Africa and Asia. This poses challenges to basic service provision but mobile-enabled innovations may provide solutions.

THIS INITIATIVE IS CURRENTLY FUNDED BY THE UK FOREIGN, COMMONWEALTH & DEVELOPMENT OFFICE (FCDO), USAID AS PART OF ITS COMMITMENT TO SCALING OFF-GRID ENERGY GRAND CHALLENGE FOR DEVELOPMENT AND SUPPORTED BY THE GSMA AND ITS MEMBERS