To advance evidence-based approach to policymaking for addressing the overall efficiency of the energy distribution sector, the Department of Energy, Government of Haryana signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with J-PAL SA and EPIC India at the University of Chicago Trust on 20th February 2020 in Panchkula, Haryana.

“Under this collaboration, we will work together to create a culture of evidence-based decision-making by partnering on rigorous evaluation of new and existing programs of DoE, capacity building of public officials to effectively use data and research evidence in public policy; and increasing the overall use of rigorous research in designing and planning government programs and policies,” the MoU said.

Shobhini Mukerji, Executive Director of J-PAL South Asia said, “We are grateful for the opportunity to work together with the Government of Haryana Department of Energy to augment the efficiency of the State’s energy distribution sector, through conducting impact evaluations of innovative new programs and utilizing data to shape policy in a rigorous and scientific manner. ”

Speaking about the collaboration, Dr. Anant Sudarshan, South Asia Director of EPIC India, added, “Haryana government’s commitment to bring in reforms in the energy distribution sector is extremely encouraging. To start with, as part of this engagement, we will assist the DoE in identifying innovative interventions for the electricity distribution sector, understand the ways of using smart meters to enhance existing billing and collection practices and also support the government’s initiatives to evaluate the impact of direct benefit transfers of electricity subsidies.”

The MoU said that the ACS (Power) DoE, GoH would oversee the implementation and work with the research team of the partner organizations to identify questions of policy importance to DoE. A steering committee would also be constituted by DoE and chaired by the ACS (Power) to periodically review project progress and assistance required.

Over the last several years, EPIC India along with J-PAL SA has been carrying out innovative research and working closely with different government departments in galvanizing policy changes that promote sustainable growth.