SEPS Call 2016: Energising Development through Knowledge Exchange

Call for SEPS Knowledge Exchange proposals 2016 aiming to mobilise knowledge and expertise for decentralised renewable energy solutions

With its ‘SEPS Knowledge Exchange’ scheme, WISIONS facilitates the mobilisation of knowledge and expertise among energy practitioners and other stakeholders in the field of sustainable energy technologies in the ‘Global South’.

Deadline for submission of applications was 17th October 2016. A list of the selected exchange activities is available here: Selected SEPS Exchange Activities – SEPS Call 2016: Energising Development Through Knowledge Exchange

Regional Focus of the call

This call for proposals addressed both focus regions of WISIONS – Latin America and the Caribbean, and South/South East Asia. The countries considered for this call are those within the Caribbean, South and Central America, South Asia and South East Asia according to the UN definition.

Why support knowledge exchanges?

Most RE technologies are now mature, but the pace of implementation and delivery has not matched the pace of technological development. It is vital to close this gap. For that purpose, exchange of knowledge is a crucial stepping-stone and we consider it to be an essential piece of the puzzle to support the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goal 7, “Access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all”, under the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Since its foundation, SEPS has provided financial support to over 100 projects and exchange activities in around 40 countries around the world. A central finding from the project support is that the success of a project is highly dependent on the capacities of the people involved and on an effective delivery model suitable for the needs of the end users. A project will only have a promising start if the implementing organisations are trustworthy, technically well-versed, committed to the people on the ground and capable of flexibility to solve problems that arise. In addition, for long-term success, appropriate maintenance, management and financial schemes need to be implemented; these schemes must be effective and should focus on building local capacity and meeting specific local needs.

There is a solid basis of knowledge and expertise among energy practitioners on technical issues, business models, strategies for capacity-building and involvement of local actors. One critical question currently is how to leverage this know-how and expertise? How can we directly reach populations who still lack access to sustainable and reliable energy services?

The 2030 Agenda recognises the mobilisation and sharing of knowledge and expertise as crucial elements for supporting the achievement of the SDGs in all countries, and in the “Global South” in particular. In recent years, this has been the precise aim of the WISIONS SEPS Knowledge Exchange scheme.

Scope of the current call

This SEPS call was looking for approaches that facilitate the exchange of knowledge and expertise needed for establishing decentralised energy solutions by strengthening locally-available human and social capacities. Consequently, applications for SEPS Knowledge Exchange support should be directly linked to sustainable energy solutions applying renewable energy technologies.

The proposed SEPS Knowledge Exchange should allow for interaction between practitioners with significant experience in the implementation of decentralised renewable energy solutions in the target region(s). The SEPS Knowledge Exchange may include the participation of experts and organisations from other global regions, although the focus should be on developing and maximising knowledge and expertise in countries in the target region(s).

Which activities are eligible as SEPS Knowledge Exchange Activities?

SEPS Knowledge Exchanges facilitate peer-to-peer interactions among practitioners, as well as between practitioners and other relevant stakeholders. The target groups for SEPS Knowledge Exchanges are energy practitioners and organisations, together with other stakeholders, in the Global South (south-south exchange).

SEPS Knowledge Exchange activities should relate to one or more of the following focus areas:

  • Capacity-building: strengthening technical, managerial, communication or other skills of practitioners.
  • South-South mutual learning: facilitating mutual learning among organisations active in the Global South.
  • Practice-to-policy exchange: addressing potentials & barriers to specific energy technologies or delivery models to raise awareness and generate policy recommendations.
  • Advocacy and awareness-raising activities: defining strategies for the effective advocacy of critical topics; creating awareness for specific technologies and/or challenges relating to sustainable energy; implementing and supporting concepts for motivating the local population.
  • Others: WISIONS is open to creative ideas on how to expand the knowledge base and to strengthen capacities of practitioners as well as of other stakeholders.

The SEPS Knowledge Exchange proposals should meet the following criteria:

  • Focus on knowledge creation, conservation, dissemination and/or capacity-building
  • Active involvement of at least one organisation with proven commitment in the field of access to sustainable energy
  • Experience in and commitment to one of the proposed regions
  • Clear focus on South-South exchange
  • Clear definition of the knowledge need(s) and gap(s) addressed
  • Clear definition of the expected outputs and outcomes
  • Relevance to the general aims of universal access to energy and sustainable development.

The following are excluded from SEPS Knowledge Exchange support:

  • Installation of technical concepts and delivery models (i.e. projects that aim at implementing, testing and monitoring the operation of technical devices)
  • Academic research projects
  • Feasibility studies
  • Long-term training courses
  • ‘North-South’ consultancy and research approaches

Application Procedure

The peer-to-peer exchange proposal must demonstrate a sound and coherent approach that is in accordance with the specific needs and expertise of the organisations involved. Applicants are, therefore, required to submit the following:

  • a completed SEPS Knowledge Exchange application form*
  • a separate budget plan in EUROS
  • a timeline and working plan

*Please DO NOT alter the original pdf document or add additional pages. If you have any problems completing the form, please contact

Aspects to consider

Around 6-10 knowledge exchange activities will be selected, with total maximum combined financial support of 300,000 EUR.

The selected coordinating partner organisations will have to conclude a grant contract with the Wuppertal Institute and will have to be authorised to issue invoices in order for funds to be transferred.

You can find examples of SEPS-Knowledge Exchange activities under SEPS project descriptions (see “Exchange” in the title).