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Reducing Electricity Theft with Incentives

Energy & Environment India
Solar panels in India. Credit: Derek Wolfson

Electricity theft in the developing world affects utilities’ ability to provide safe, affordable, and reliable energy services. In Bihar, India, nearly 65% of households with electricity access report that they have it for less than 8 hours a day. This project tests whether informational nudges and financial incentives curb electricity theft, and thus, increase revenues. Researchers conduct a randomized evaluation in Bihar in partnership with a smart meter provider and a large electricity distribution company in Bihar. Treatment measures include social engagement through educating and communicating consumers’ concerns, as well as installing smart meters to remotely measure consumption. Results forthcoming.

Funding
  • Operations
    $2,000
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