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2004 World Technology Awards Winners & Finalists

Fabio Luis de Oliveira Rosa

Please describe the work that you are doing that you consider to be the most innovative and of the greatest likely long-term significance.

Two billion of people around the world don’t have access to electricity. It is estimated as 1/3 of the population on Earth. The majority are poor and isolated, located in rural areas. It is like living in the 19th Century or before. I am talking about the “Electricity Divide”.

The traditional approaches to bring electricity to people aren’t enough to resolve this case, because there are simultaneous economic , technical and human limitations. If people don’t have access to electricity, they won’t have access to communications and the internet.

In the last 20 years, I invested my life time developing systems of adequate technology and adequate arrangements to bring electricity to poor people and small farmers in isolated rural areas.

In this way, at first I developed a complete technical system and business design of low cost rural electrification on grid.

At first, it served 240,000 families and supplied electricity to an estimate of 1 million of people in Brazil.

These projects were supported by the National Bank for Social and Economic Development - BNDES, the Government of the Rio Grande do Sul State, the government of São Paulo State and the University of São Paulo.

Afterwards, the new materials, technology and approach were recognized by the Ministry of Energy, and at this moment the standard is used all over Brazil by the electricity companies, serving millions of people.

But, it was only a part of the solution.

Another issue was how to serve people and traditional communities, in very isolated areas, as Amazonia and the Southgrassland Pampas. There was no answer. And no government subsidies, because in the 90’s the electric sector was made private.

There were renewable energy technologies, but they were too expensive for people to buy them. And there wasn’t a local culture on renewables or how to do management in isolated areas.

Then, I developed another approach to serve people, now using renewables, in special solar photovoltaic energy.

It is a complete new concept of business approach, with a very detailed, specialized and adapted business, management and technical approach.

This model permits to serve poor people without electricity and to bring electricity to poor people in a completely sustainable approach, without subsidies.

This project won the “Social Entrepreneur Award 2000 – the most innovative idea in fundraising” – an Ashoka Social Entrepreneurs and McKinsey Co. initiative.

Then it received support of the Solar Development Group (Washington DC, USA) and the Canopus Foundation (Freiburg, Deutschland).

At this moment we are working to establish RENOVE – the Brazilian Network for the Use of Renewable Energy.

This is a partnership of 16 Brazilian NGOs, located all over Brazil, and its mission is to improve the use of renewable energy, sustainable development and income generation.

IDEAAS is impIementing this initiave and I am the Executive Secretary, working to develop the network and improve partnerships all over Brazil.

In this case, we are creating a way to make the initiative scale up, and making the private sector, the private investors sector and the non profit sector working together, in a new approach to serve people with energy.

IDEAAS and I have been recognized and certified as “Outstanding Social Entrepreneur” in 2002, by the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, linked to the World Economic Forum.

Brief Biography

a. Education

Agronomical Engineer, 1982, Faculdade de Agronomia, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul State, Brazil.

b. Executive Summary

Social entrepreneur and businessman. Experience in designing and implementing low cost rural electrification systems, solar photovoltaic energy systems, use of alternative energies to design rural development (irrigation, artesian wells, electric fencing), low cost sustainable rural development models in cattle and rice farming, organic beef and milk production, ecological grazing management, financing for the introduction of innovative technical progress models. Experience in the conception and management of private and non-profit organizations for the development of sustainable development projects. Recipient of awards.

c. Experience

2002 - Executive Secretary, RENOVE - National net for the use of renewable energy, Bahia, Brazil. Implementation of financial and administrative structure and support service to members, fundraising plan, political representative action, development of the network.

2002 - Executive Director – IDEAAS - Institute for the Development of Natural Energy and Sustainability, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Implementation the financial and administrative structure, financial and administrative management, political representative action, development and fundraising to projects, project implementation.

1998 – 2002: Founder and elected President of IDEAAS – Institute for the Development of Natural Energy and Sustainability. Implementation the financial and administrative structure, development of membership, development of projects, fundraising, political representative action.

2000 – present: President of the Directive Council - STA – SISTEMAS DE TECNOLOGIA ADEQUADA – Adequate Technology Systems, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Political representative action, development of projects, fundraising.

1992 – 2000: Founder and Executive Director - STA – SISTEMAS DE TECNOLOGIA ADEQUADA – Adequate Technology Systems, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Implantation and management of enterprise structure, development of photovoltaic market and electric fencing market in rural áreas, introduction of technical progress in rural areas.

1990 - present: Founder and Executive Director - Fabio Rosa & Ricardo Mello – Simplified Rural Electrification, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Implementation of low cost rural electrification programs, in the brazilian states of Rio Grande do Sul and São Paulo, bringing rural electrification to 240.000 families

1983 –1988: Municipal Secretary of Agriculture in Palmares do Sul Municipality, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Development and implementation of low cost rural electrification program, income generation program to small farmers, implementation of the administrative structure.

d. Honourable Titles 2002 – “AVINA FOUNDATION LEADER”. Avina Foundation. Miami, USA. 2002- “OUTSTANDING SOCIAL ENTREPREUNER”. The Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreunership”. World Economic Forum 2002, New York, USA. 2001 - “TECHNOLOGY PERSONALITY 2001”. São Paulo State Engineers Society. São Paulo. São Paulo, Brasil. 2001 - “AWARD OF APPRECIATION”. Embassy of United States of America/ United States Agency for International Development – USAID/Energy Program. Brasília, Brasil. 2001 - “THE TECH MUSEUM OF INNOVATION AWARDS – ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CATEGORY WINNER”. The Tech Museum of Innovations, Center for Science, Technology & Society; Santa Clara University, CA & The United Nations University, “The Milenium Project.”. California State, United States of America. www.forbes.com/specialsections/techmuseumawards/credit_suise.html 2000 - “ SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP PRIZE 2000 – ASHOKA / McKinsey” Innovative idea in Fundraising. São Paulo State, Brazil. 1988 - “MERIT OF THE IMPERIAL BRIDGE”, for relevant services rendered to the community of Palmares do Sul; City Hall of Palmares do Sul, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. 1994 - “THE ASHOKA SOCIETY MEMBERLIFE FELLOW”. Ashoka Social Entrepreneurs, Washington DC, United States of America.