Emilie Etienne

PhD candidate in sociology and economics
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Institutional membership: 
Université Grenoble Alpes
PhD Candidate (f)
Non permanent.e
Research areas: 
International cooperation
Research team: 



Between 2010 and 2020, I worked for NGOs and a social enterprise on energy, water and sanitation, and disaster risk management for urban and rural populations in Latin America, Asia and Africa. My interest in the future of these infrastructures and research in general led me to start a PhD in December 2020 to understand how development projects evolve over time.

My PhD is being carried out at the University of Grenoble-Alpes, under the supervision of Pascale Trompette, sociologist, and Sandrine Mathy, economist, respectively members of the PACTE and GAEL laboratories. Schneider Electric, through the Access to Energy team (Frédérick Choupin, Nicolas Plain) is sponsoring my work.

Working languages: French, Spanish, English and Portuguese

The future of solar projects: a socio-economic research on the autonomy of off-grid solutions in emerging countries
External supervisor(s): 
Sandrine Mathy; GAEL

Solar mini-grids for rural electrification are burgeoning in Africa, supported by major international players, cooperation programmes and African States. Despite significant financial and technical commitments, the sustainability of these decentralized solutions is low. Based on the empirical study of a variety of mini-grid projects in Senegal and Kenya, I mobilize approaches at the crossroads of sociology of organizations, public policy analysis, management studies, to analyze public action and decentralized governance models around the construction of reliable access to energy. The concept of accountability, i.e. the obligation to explain and justify one's conduct (Bovens, 2007), leads me to analyze the interactions of actors of different scales around the maintenance of socio-technical systems, by questioning their responsibilities, information flows, sanctions and incentives.