Regional Workshop: Sustainable energy sources for rural development and climatic resilience of off-grid communities in Central America, the Caribbean and Mexico

The Smart Villages Initiative and the Academy of Sciences of the Dominican Republic jointly held an international workshop on the role of renewable energy for rural development and for enhancing the climatic resilience of off-grid communities in Central America, the Caribbean and Mexico. The event took place from 16 to 18 November in Punta Cana, the Dominican Republic.

The forum aims to facilitate the analysis and exchange of knowledge between the public sector, non-governmental organizations and the private sector, based on experiences in the field of rural electrification through sustainable energy sources. Workshop topics include: renewable energy and energy efficiency for rural economic development and for improving social services (health and education); access to energy for risk management against natural disasters; renewable energy to increase local energy security; opportunities and challenges for the private sector in the rural electrification sector; and regulatory framework for rural electrification.

Smart Villages ( is an initiative that aims to explore the opportunities and challenges for rural energy access for off-grid communities in developing countries. It is funded by the Cambridge Malaysian Education and Development Trust and the Templeton World Charity Foundation, with a team based at the Universities of Cambridge and Oxford in the United Kingdom.

The Academy of Sciences of the Dominican Republic, ACRD, was founded on December 20, 1974, and incorporated by Executive Decree No. 1097 on June 8, 1975. It is a scientific, non-partisan, non-governmental and non-profit organization dedicated to promoting scientific research and advances, technological innovation and knowledge to promote sustainable social and economic development of the Dominican Republic. Its membership consists of scientists specialized in different branches of knowledge, with high human, moral and ethical standards.

The event was followed on the 19th November by a media dialogue workshop for journalists from throughout the region interested in covering rural development, resilience and energy access issues.

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