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2023 Energy Innovation in LMICs Global Case Writing Competition

The William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan cordially invites you to enter our competition and submit your business case study about an energy innovation by a profit-seeking business in one or more low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).

The world needs $1.3 trillion in incremental investment by 2030 in energy output and infrastructure, according to J.P. Morgan’s Annual Energy Outlook. Most of the new  demand will come from emerging markets as they continue to work toward their development goals. At present, nearly 733 million people in the world live with no electricity. By 2030, 670 million people still won’t have it. And, approximately 2.6 billion people cook or heat their homes with fossil fuels that pollute the environment and can be harmful to their health. According to the International Energy Agency, price and economic pressures due to the current global energy crisis mean that the number of people without access to modern energy is rising for the first time in a decade.

Innovation is needed to address the large-scale and complex challenges related to energy. The global transition away from fossil fuels toward renewables is creating new market opportunities, especially in LMICs. In addition to policy, technology and other solutions, developing and scaling profitable business models is a crucial aspect of meeting evolving energy needs in LMICs.

WDI is proud to offer a competition aimed at increasing the number of academic business cases available about this very important topic.

Please see our Submission Requirements for more information.

Who Can Enter?

  • Individual students or student teams (graduate or undergraduate) and other professionals may enter, but must enter in collaboration with a faculty member or instructor from an accredited university/college, in the U.S. or internationally.
  • Individual faculty/instructors or teams from an accredited university/college (in the U.S. or internationally) may also enter.

Key Dates

  • December 14, 2022 (10am-11am EST): Informational webinar. Register HERE.
  • January 31, 2023: “Intent to Enter” forms due.
  • March 31, 2023: Final submission documents due.
  • July 2023: Public announcement of winners.

Steps to Enter

  1. Review Submission Requirements, as well as Resources.
  2. Review Frequently Asked Questions.
  3. Submit online Intent-to-Enter Form by January 31, 2023.
  4. Submit online Submission Form and final documents by March 31, 2023.

Competition Objectives

  • Encourage and reward the development of new business case studies that focus on an energy innovation in one or more low- and middle-income countries.
  • Publish higher education case studies that will help develop the necessary critical thinking skills in today’s students regarding the unique energy characteristics of LMICs.
  • Accelerate global knowledge of energy innovations being implemented by businesses in LMICs.


  • 1st Place Award: $3,000
  • 2nd Place Award: $2,000
  • 3rd Place Award: $1,000

WDI Publishing will formally publish and distribute the winning cases.