Renewable Energy, a fountain of skilled jobs for Africa & Asia


Powering Jobs Census 2019: the Energy Access Workforce, released by Power for All, is the first of its kind, an annual jobs census measuring employment from decentralized renewables in Africa and Asia. It covers Nigeria, India and Kenya with plans to expand the census to 25 countries by 2021.

The project is backed by Schneider Electric Foundation and The Rockefeller Foundation.


“Energy access is key to building a modern, more equitable economy”

– Suman Sureshbabu, Associate Director of The Rockefeller Foundation’s power initiative

The Powering Jobs Census 2019 report – background

The report provides a unique look at energy access jobs created by decentralised renewable energy (DRE). Jobs include solar for home and business, green mini-grids and machinery for productive use.

“Access to electricity means access to jobs,”

– Dr. Rebekah Shirley, Power for All’s Chief Research Officer and census lead researcher


  • Renewable energy employs 11 million people globally, yet only 2% are in Sub-Saharan Africa (excluding South Africa).
  • DRE can solve a huge unemployment problem – especially for youth and women.
  • DRE solutions employ the same number as the traditional utility power sector, in India Nigeria and Kenya.
  • Access to electricity is boosting the economy in rural communities.
  • 40% of DRE jobs are being filled by youth.
  • Women account for only a quarter of the of jobs polled, suggesting women are an untapped workforce.
  • There is potential for massive job creation. But only if policy-makers and their financial backers get on board too.


“Access to energy is a basic human right, that’s why we are committed to train 1 million underprivileged people in energy management by 2025. However, we know that we need to create a robust ecosystem that allows these communities – specifically youth and women – to find job opportunities. By empowering local populations to manage and maintain new energy technologies, economic activity can begin to thrive. A huge job creation opportunity exists provided that governments support the ability of local people to build skills and capacity.”

– Gilles Vermot Desroches, Chief Sustainability Officer, Schneider Electric, and General Delegate of the Schneider Electric Foundation


Further reading