Overview of World Resources Institute Energy Program



A true highlight of our trip to Washington DC was visiting the World Resource Institute. We had the privilege of meeting with the Global Director of WRI’s Energy Program, and were excited to hear about the impactful work the Program has done – as well as what is envisioned for the future. WRI is a global research organization comprised of over 1,700 experts working across 60+ countries. The Institute works with a range of stakeholders, from governments and multilateral institutions to civil society groups and business. A key part of WRI’s mission is to “Make Big Ideas Happen”. Over the course of this visit we had the chance to better understand what some of those big ideas are, and how they are made a reality. 

Energy is one of 7 programs at WRI. The Energy Program collaborates with policymakers, utilities, cities, companies, and development institutions to ensure a future with access to clean and affordable energy for all. During our visit, we heard about the three human systems transitions that the Program finds will be critical to securing a sustainable future: Energy, Cities, Food, Land, and Water 

On Energy, the Program’s vision for the transition is to see all people have access to clean, affordable, and reliable energy by 2030. This involves ensuring just transitions that are tailored to the national contexts of the countries the Program works in. On the demand side, this could mean reducing demand for energy in some places, while growing demand in others.On the Cities transition, the Energy Program works towards ensuring livable neighborhoods, sustainable energy for all, water resilience, and integrated mobility. On Food, Land, and Water, the Energy Program is investigating how to manage the limited land we have, setting the world on a path to achieving the Paris Agreement in a manner that advances both equity and prosperity. 

We were interested and excited to learn about what the Energy Program will be focusing on in the next 5 years. The Program is working towards ensuring clean energy supply and demand, energy access and equitable development, and a reliable energy supply chain. This vision would involve the following: Utility decarbonization and expanded, resilient grid infrastructure, Clean energy procurement, Better standards and protections for livelihoods in the agriculture space 

This was an incredibly informative presentation and visit, and it was valuable to hear from the Energy Program on their initiatives and visions. More broadly, we came away with a better understanding of how research organizations such as WRI delineate and execute on those big visions.

Climate change

The energy sector is
central of efforts to
combat climate change

Climate change

In a hotter world energy
efficiency is more
important than ever