USES Programme

The USES programme is a collaboration between the UK Research Councils’ Energy Programme ( – which is run through the EPSRC (, the Department for International Development (DFID – and the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC – The programme is intended to increase clean energy access, resilience and wealth creation in developing countries (particularly for the urban and rural poor), through high quality research that improves the understanding and evidence-base of opportunities and challenges associated with clean energy for development. This research is focused on five themes – energy systems and decentralized use; solar; bioenergy; urban and transport; and energy efficiency

The USES programme is a response by the UK government to the international recognition of the growing urgency of tackling climate change and its impact on growth and poverty reduction, a recognition which has already led to the establishment of the International Climate Fund (ICF). The role of the ICF is to support international poverty reduction by helping developing countries to adapt to climate change, make the transition to lower carbon pathways to growth, and tackle deforestation.

Each of the projects funded under the USES programme is intended to contribute to a longer term goal of increased clean energy access, resilience and wealth creation for low-income households and communities in developing countries. They take very different approaches to doing this, but all have the broad general aim of delivering an outcome of high quality research to improve understanding of the opportunities and challenges associated with scaling up clean energy for development.

The overall goal of the programme is that it will lead to:

  • Improved understanding of clean energy options and opportunities for developing countries.
  • Improved understanding of the social, market and political economy aspects of scaling sustainable energy access for poor people.
  • Strengthened developing country research capacity on clean energy.
  • Improved access to practical and policy-relevant knowledge on the challenges and opportunities for sustainable energy solutions in developing countries.

For information on the individual projects funded under the programme please see the Projects page of this site.

University College London


The University of Nottingham


University of Surrey


University of Warwick


University of Machester


Loughborough University


Institute of Development Studies


De Montfort University


University of Newcastle Upon Tyne


Sustainable Energy Associates

sustainable energy associates india

Sustainable Energy Africa

sustainable energy africa

United International University, Bangladesh




International Rice Research Institute

international rice research institute

King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi


Access: Energy


African Centre for Technology Studies


Institute for Globally Transformative Technologies


The Nairobi Women’s Hospital


The Open University



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