About IEEE Smart Village

IEEE Smart Village stimulates social enterprise by providing renewable electrical systems, start-up training and ongoing support to help poor, energy-deprived communities globally build toward sustainable prosperity.

Programs — Spotlight — Executive Committee — VideosFAQ — Contact

IEEE Smart Village brings electricity to those in need.Micro-utility equipment is seed-funded to in-country, non-governmental organization (NGO) partners to create self-sustaining, community-owned and -operated micro-utilities where the people are typically living on less than $1-$2 per day. Combining the talents of more than 400,000 members across IEEE with partners in education, business and technologies, IEEE Smart Village delivers immediate, life-changing impact in off-grid areas.

Our Mission

IEEE Smart Village empowers off-grid communities through education and the creation of sustainable, affordable, locally owned entrepreneurial energy businesses.

Electricity is widely considered to be a major driver to eliminate the worst of poverty and build toward sustainable community prosperity. Nearly 4 billion people around the world today live without reliable access to electricity. This population often resorts to ineffective, unsafe and costly ad-hoc solutions to light their homes, cook their meals and run their medical clinics. In attaining even a moderate capability for basic electricity, however, people in off-grid regions take a primary leap forward in securing other critical services that are so frequently lacking in their communities: clean water, sanitation, health services, access to education, participation in the global economy, etc. IEEE Smart Village—an IEEE Foundation Signature Program—addresses this profound need in a brand-new and sweeping way.

Our Vision

To bring basic electrical and educational services to more than 50 million people by 2025.

Homework by Light - Muhuru Bay
Children studying by the light powered by IEEE Smart Village. Date: 2015. Location: Kenya. Photo by: Steve Szablya.


A man introducing the IEEE Smart Village program and LED light. Date: 2013. Location: Haiti. Photo by: Ray Larsen.


Dr. Martin Niboh (left), president and founder of TBF, shaking hands with Eric Chi of the National Polytechnic University-Bamenda, Cameroon. Date: 2014. Location: Cameroon. Photo by: Mike Wilson

IEEE Smart Village holistically supports local entrepreneurs in off-grid communities to grow electricity businesses of the scope and character that best serve the specific needs of customers in those communities. Then, all benefits accrue directly to that community, not outside ownership. IEEE Smart Village provides photovoltaic (PV) community charging stations, along with training and support, to local entrepreneurs in off-grid communities, who then lease portable battery kits to homeowners.


Phuntsok Wangstak, wires the light sockets at Lingshed monastery.

To date, IEEE Smart Village has achieved considerable success with pilots in Cameroon, Haiti, Kenya, Nigeria and South Sudan. Potential NGO partners have been identified in Burkina Faso, Gambia, India, Malawi, Namibia and Zambia, and future implementations are planned in many more countries.

Now, a major fundraising initiative is underway to help enable IEEE Smart Village to:

  • Scale up the promising pilot efforts in targeted countries around the world
  • Promote the pilot efforts widely across the global IEEE network of members, students and universities
  • Convene government leaders and other stakeholders to accelerate adoption of the IEEE Smart Village system and other proven approaches

Empower entrepreneurs around the globe to permanently improve the environment, the economy and the lives of millions. Please support IEEE Smart Village today.