Tanzania is expanding its electricity services. But the sector still faces many challenges in terms of delivering a high quality, reliable service for customers. For customers of TANESCO, the Tanzanian electricity supply company, power cuts are a major preoccupation, and have an impact on their work, domestic life and other services they use. As the grid expands, expectations of access to a connection are also increasing. Electricity services need to be improved. There are many routes to achieving this, from more investment and infrastructure upgrades to new policy targets.
IIED, Hivos and Twaweza hosted an interactive workshop on information channels and feedback mechanisms for electricity services in Tanzania. This workshop took place on 8th December 2015 in Dar Es Salaam, and was part of the Tanzanian Energy Change Lab initiative co-founded by IIED and Hivos.
The intention of the workshop was to offer a practical space for experts to explore these questions – all with the objective of improving energy service delivery. The specific workshop focus was electricity provision, both for grid-connected customers and those using modern products such as portable lights and solar home systems for their lighting needs. The workshop audience included electricity providers (grid, off-grid), sector experts, policy-makers, regulators, development partners and civil society organisations.
The workshop also introduced background research, including a survey of 2000 households conducted with the Tanzanian NGO Twaweza, which assessed customer awareness and perceptions of existing information channels associated with energy product and service delivery. The background research also brought learning from other sectors, with the intention of cross-sector examples to stimulate discussion