The Programme will be implemented by the University of Rwanda in partnership with three Swedish Universities; Chalmers University of Technology, University of Gothenburg and Jönköping University. The overall goal of the partnership is to establish a sustainable long-term research partnership UR based Africa Centre of Excellence in Energy for Sustainable Development (ACE-ESD) in order to build research capacity relevant to achieving sustainable, affordable, reliable, and viable energy systems in Rwanda, focussed on Smart electrification for rural development. It will facilitate the the graduation of PhD students and further training of 5 postdocs, evaluation and improvement of existing Master program, creation of a dynamic research culture resulting in international publications, joint research projects and a mechanism for translating research to real world solutions in partnership with community members, the energy sector and civil society.
The Programme is developed based on a background and intention to build capacity for research training programmes that is gender and environmental sensitive at UR and the overall goal is to establish a long-term partnership that is mutually beneficial for both Sweden and Rwanda. The Programme is therefore geared towards addressing identified gaps such as gender imbalance in staff, low capacity to conduct postgraduate training and lead research in prioritised research areas, weak research culture, lack of real integration of gender and poverty aspects and environmental issues.
The main goal is to increase the quantity and quality of research produced in energy for sustainable development at UR. This will be achieved by high quality training of people who can contribute to Rwanda’s energy sector and who can also train other to contribute and, thus, create the necessary critical mass of people to transform Rwanda’s energy sector. Through PhDs and postdoctoral and other trainings, the Programme expect at least 200 well trained people by 2050 impacting Rwanda’s energy sector.