Abstract for: Assessing Sustainable Development of Isolated Communities: The Role of Electricity Supply

The term “rural development” refers to initiatives undertaken aiming to improve the quality of life of non-urban communities. Sustainable development (SD) of rural communities is directly linked to the communities’ skills for adapting themselves to changing conditions in constructive ways. Different studies have shown that one important factor contributing to the development and growth of rural communities is power supply (Berglund & Soderholm, 2006; B. Borroto, Borroto, & Vázquez, 1998; DFID, 1997). However, assessments on the influence of power supply over rural development have fallen short of expectation as they have been too technical, mainly using econometric approaches or coefficients based on misery line. This paper seeks to contribute from a holistic approach to identify economic and social development in which energy is a crucial factor that contributes to human, social, and economic development, all supported on information technologies and mechanization processes, thus enabling sustainable development.