The Climate and Clean Technology Opportunity for Developing Countries
The infoDev study “Building Competitive Green Industries” estimates that over the next decade $6.4 trillion will be invested to develop clean technologies in developing countries. Business incubation specialist Michael Ehst explains why 6.4 represents the key to a greener and more prosperous future for all of us.
On March 25th and 26th, the South Africa Climate Innovation Center (SACIC) hosted a world-class conference on Green Technologies and Innovations for Inclusive Growth to inaugurate its national program and launch infoDev’s global network of Climate Innovation Centers (CICs). By combining workshops and panel discussions with a pitching competition and an expo showcasing local clean-tech ventures, the event provided a unique way for participants to dive deep into innovative and locally relevant business solutions to climate change.
infoDev’s Kenya Climate Innovation Center (KCIC) ranked at the top of the 2014 edition of the prestigious University Business Incubators (UBI) Index. The center was named ‘Most Promising Business Incubator’ among all the institutions participating in Africa.
Much of the emphasis on climate change has been on urging countries to act to avoid environmental catastrophe. This new report frames responding to climate change as an extraordinary economic opportunity, particularly in developing countries. The report, published by infoDev, a global innovation and entrepreneurship program in the Bank Group’s Trade & Competitiveness (T&C) Global Practice, recommends actions by the public and private sectors to foster the growing market for SMEs in the clean technology sector.
The findings from the community outreach conducted for this report do not present a one-size-fits-all solution to implement inclusive green growth strategies across all developing countries. Hence, these findings are observed in light of the Gauteng CIC, which aims to facilitate and foster innovative clean technology entrepreneurship within the context of the surrounding township communities.
The Climate Technology Program (CTP) is housed at infoDev, a global technology and entrepreneurship program in the World Bank Group. The CTP supports the private sector in developing countries - targeting SMEs and entrepreneurs - to innovate novel technologies and business models to address local climate challenges.
infoDev's Climate Technology Program (CTP) aims to accelerate the development, deployment and transfer of locally relevant climate technologies. The program’s flagship activity is the design and implementation of CICs, which are currently planned in seven locations: Kenya, India, Ethiopia, South Africa, Morocco, Vietnam and the Caribbean. Each CIC represents a holistic and tailored approach to innovation through financing, business advisory, policy advocacy and technical assistance. This effectively harnesses economic opportunities in developing countries through entrepreneurship and small and medium enterprise (SME) development in the climate technology sector.
Business plan development is part of the feasibility phase of the CIC process. During this phase, infoDev conducts a feasibility analysis via an in-country multi-stakeholder engagement process and sector mapping exercise of the climate innovation landscape.
Climate change is affecting ecosystems around the world, with some of the world’s poorest nations suffering the worst of the effects. As the consequences of increased emissions, deforestation, and other climate challenges become more drastic, global economic growth will increasingly be limited by issues of energy and resource access, security, and volatility. The Climate Technology Program is funded by the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA), UK’s Department for International Development (DfID), the government of Norway, and the World Bank. It aims to transform climate change challenges into market opportunities by offering a suite of local and global programs and financing that build in-country and international innovation capacity in cleantech. As a result, the CTP enables developing country entrepreneurs to be more proactively and profitably involved in one of the most promising sectors of the 21st century.
The CTP’s flagship initiative is the network of Climate Innovation Centers, or CICs. The CICs are entrepreneur and new venture support facilities tailor-made to respond to a country’s development challenges. They provide holistic support that goes beyond traditional incubation, including seed financing facilities, specialized policy interventions and specific network linkages as well as technical facilities, and business training.
On the global level, CTP drives clean-tech innovation by packaging and sharing knowledge from the CICs through our Climate TRACK initiative, mobilizing funds for high-impact technologies through the IGNITE Fund, linking promising companies with global partners and mentors through our cutting-edge Market CONNECT platform, and deploying Impact Xchange—a custom enhanced impact monitoring tool—along with the training to build up the CIC and host-government capacity.
For a deeper look at our Climate Technology Program, check out its chapter in our Work Program.Read More