A capabilities-led approach to assessing technological solutions for a rural community

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A capabilities-led approach to assessing technological solutions for a rural community. / Wang, Xinfang; Day, Rosie; Murrant, Dan; Marín, Antonio Diego; Botello, David Castrejón; González, Francisco López; Radcliffe, Jonathan.

In: Energies, Vol. 14, No. 5, 1398, 04.03.2021.

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Wang, Xinfang ; Day, Rosie ; Murrant, Dan ; Marín, Antonio Diego ; Botello, David Castrejón ; González, Francisco López ; Radcliffe, Jonathan. / A capabilities-led approach to assessing technological solutions for a rural community. In: Energies. 2021 ; Vol. 14, No. 5.

Bibtex

@article{26af44da74284b3bb46f347a8a653830,
title = "A capabilities-led approach to assessing technological solutions for a rural community",
abstract = "To improve access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy in rural areas of the global south, off-grid systems using renewable generation and energy storage are often proposed. However, solution design is often technology-driven, with insufficient consideration of social and cultural contexts. This leads to a risk of unintended consequences and inappropriate systems that do not meet local needs. To address this problem, this paper describes the application of a capabilities-led approach to understanding a community{\textquoteright}s multi-dimensional energy poverty and assessing their needs as they see them, in order to better design suitable technological interventions. Data were collected in Tlamacazapa, Mexico, through site visits and focus groups with men and women. These revealed the ways in which constrained energy services undermined essential capabilities, including relating to health, safety, relationships and earning a living, and highlighted the specific ways in which improved energy services, such as lighting, cooking and mechanical power could improve capabilities in the specific context of Tlamacazapa. Based on these findings, we propose some potential technological interventions to address these needs. The case study offers an illustration of an assessment method that could be deployed in a variety of contexts to inform the design of appropriate technological interventions.",
keywords = "capabilities approach, wellbeing, energy services, energy storage, solar, renewable energy, energy poverty, Mexico",
author = "Xinfang Wang and Rosie Day and Dan Murrant and Mar{\'i}n, {Antonio Diego} and Botello, {David Castrej{\'o}n} and Gonz{\'a}lez, {Francisco L{\'o}pez} and Jonathan Radcliffe",
year = "2021",
month = mar,
day = "4",
doi = "10.3390/en14051398",
language = "English",
volume = "14",
journal = "Energies",
issn = "1996-1073",
publisher = "MDPI",
number = "5",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - A capabilities-led approach to assessing technological solutions for a rural community

AU - Wang, Xinfang

AU - Day, Rosie

AU - Murrant, Dan

AU - Marín, Antonio Diego

AU - Botello, David Castrejón

AU - González, Francisco López

AU - Radcliffe, Jonathan

PY - 2021/3/4

Y1 - 2021/3/4

N2 - To improve access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy in rural areas of the global south, off-grid systems using renewable generation and energy storage are often proposed. However, solution design is often technology-driven, with insufficient consideration of social and cultural contexts. This leads to a risk of unintended consequences and inappropriate systems that do not meet local needs. To address this problem, this paper describes the application of a capabilities-led approach to understanding a community’s multi-dimensional energy poverty and assessing their needs as they see them, in order to better design suitable technological interventions. Data were collected in Tlamacazapa, Mexico, through site visits and focus groups with men and women. These revealed the ways in which constrained energy services undermined essential capabilities, including relating to health, safety, relationships and earning a living, and highlighted the specific ways in which improved energy services, such as lighting, cooking and mechanical power could improve capabilities in the specific context of Tlamacazapa. Based on these findings, we propose some potential technological interventions to address these needs. The case study offers an illustration of an assessment method that could be deployed in a variety of contexts to inform the design of appropriate technological interventions.

AB - To improve access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy in rural areas of the global south, off-grid systems using renewable generation and energy storage are often proposed. However, solution design is often technology-driven, with insufficient consideration of social and cultural contexts. This leads to a risk of unintended consequences and inappropriate systems that do not meet local needs. To address this problem, this paper describes the application of a capabilities-led approach to understanding a community’s multi-dimensional energy poverty and assessing their needs as they see them, in order to better design suitable technological interventions. Data were collected in Tlamacazapa, Mexico, through site visits and focus groups with men and women. These revealed the ways in which constrained energy services undermined essential capabilities, including relating to health, safety, relationships and earning a living, and highlighted the specific ways in which improved energy services, such as lighting, cooking and mechanical power could improve capabilities in the specific context of Tlamacazapa. Based on these findings, we propose some potential technological interventions to address these needs. The case study offers an illustration of an assessment method that could be deployed in a variety of contexts to inform the design of appropriate technological interventions.

KW - capabilities approach

KW - wellbeing

KW - energy services

KW - energy storage

KW - solar

KW - renewable energy

KW - energy poverty

KW - Mexico

U2 - 10.3390/en14051398

DO - 10.3390/en14051398

M3 - Article

VL - 14

JO - Energies

JF - Energies

SN - 1996-1073

IS - 5

M1 - 1398

ER -