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Dr. Debajit Palit

Dr. Debajit Palit has more than 25 years of experience working in the field of renewable energy and energy transition, clean energy access (SDG7), electricity policy and regulation, rural electrification, decentralized electricity solutions, energy-gender-poverty nexus, and water-energy-food nexus. He has been listed in the Top 2% World’s Scientists (last 3 years in a row) by Stanford University and Elsevier BV.

Before joining the NTPC School of Business in April 2022, Dr. Palit was associated with The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), an independent global research and policy think-tank, from 1998 to March 2022. At TERI, he has completed nearly 200 analytical, action research and implementation projects in the field of clean energy technology, resource assessment & energy planning, decentralised energy project implementation, rural electrification policy and regulation, monitoring, evaluation, impact assessment and capacity building. He has managed around 70 projects as Principal Investigator/Team Leader including the award-winning Lighting a Billion Lives Initiative (awarded PMI Project of Year award in the NGO category in 2013) and OASYS South Asia (Green Gown award in 2015 by Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges, UK). From 2012 to 2022, Dr. Palit was leading the Social Transformation/Rural Energy and Livelihoods Division in TERI as the Associate Director/Director and Senior Fellow, supervising a multidisciplinary team of 20+ research professionals and technical staff.

Dr. Palit possesses vast national and international experience, working in projects for UN organisations, Bilateral organisations, The World Bank, Asian Development Bank, and national governments across 17 countries in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. He has written widely on energy access and rural electrification issues and has published 3 books and around 145 research papers in peer-reviewed journals, conference proceedings, books, and magazines. He is a sought-out speaker on rural energy issues, renewable energy mini-grids – technology and business models, water-energy-food, energy-livelihood, and energy-gender-poverty nexus and has participated in more than 100 national and international conferences and workshops across Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Americas. Dr. Palit is conversant with policy and programme formulation and have been part of various Government of India Committees and National/International Expert Groups on Energy & Rural Electrification and Jury Member for academic & corporate awards.

Dr Palit holds a Master’s degree in Physics and Ph.D. in Energy Policy. The title of his doctoral thesis is “Towards convergence of grid and decentralised electricity solutions for effective rural electrification”

For more details, Please visit https://www.linkedin.com/in/prof-debajit-palit-phd-86663115/.


  • Energy Governance
  • Energy Policy 
  • Distributed Generation and Microgrids
  • Electricity Distribution Management
  • Renewable Energy
  • Water-Energy-Food nexus
  • Energy-Livelihood nexus 
  • Energy-Gender-Poverty nexus


  • Doctorate of Philosophy (Ph.D) 
    Energy Policy from TERI School of Advanced Studies
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Non-Conventional Energy Technology
    from Tezpur University
  • Master of Science (Physics)
     Gauhati University


  • Professor, NTPC School of Business
  • Visiting Faculty, Anant National University
  • Visiting Faculty, TERI School of Advanced Studies


  • Co-chair, Rural Energy Supply, Solar World Congress 2023, International Solar Energy Society.
  • Vice President (Hon), Indian Association for Energy Economics
  • Member, LVDC Distribution Systems Sectional Committee (ETD 50), Bureau of Indian Standards; 
  • Member, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy Committee for Benchmark costs for Decentralised Solar Applications
  • Editorial Board Member, Environmental Research Communications (IF 3.237)
  • Advisory Board Member, Energy Manager by Society of Energy Engineers and Manager
  • Member, Technical Committee of the Decentralised Distributed Generation scheme under the National Rural Electrification Programme of the Government of India; 2013-2018.
  • Represented TERI as Member, Working Group for Development of the Guidelines for Decentralized Distributed Generation under the National Rural Electrification Program, Ministry of Power, Government of India; 2007-08.
  • Represented TERI as Member, Sub-Group on Distribution including Village and Household Electrification of 11th Five Year Plan Working Group on Power, Government of India, 2006.
  • Represented TERI at the Steering Committee of the Energy for All Partnership of the Asian Development Bank from 2012 to 2021.
  • Jury Chair/Member for Mahindra RISE Prize 2014-15, BIRAC-Innovation Challenge Award – Solution for Community Health 2020-22, Social Alpha Techtonic – Innovations in Clean Energy, 2021 and Social Alpha Energy Challenge 2019, among others.  


Energy Policies, Legislations and Regulations
Distributed Generation and Microgrids
Electricity in Transition
Energy Economics



2019 – 2022Top 2% World’s Scientists (2019 and 2020) by Stanford University and Elsevier BV
2021AntarPrerna – Celebrating Change makers for Year 2021 Award – by SEWA, Assam
2009-2010Roll of Honour – Recognition by TERI for outstanding contribution in the year 2009-10
 1996Topper in Post Graduate Diploma in Non-Conventional Energy Technology, Tezpur University
 1st class 2nd position and Distinction during Graduation with Physics, Gauhati University

Authored Books

  1. Ulsrud K, Muchunku C, Palit D, Kirubi G. 2018.

Solar Energy, Mini-grids, and Sustainable Electricity Access – Practical Experiences, Lessons and Solutions from Senegal (ISBN 9781138359031); 126pp; Routledge. https://www.routledge.com/Solar-Energy-Mini-grids-and-Sustainable-Electricity-Access-Practical-Experiences/Ulsrud-Muchunku-Palit-Kirubi/p/book/9781138359031

  1. Bhattacharyya S. C., Palit D. 2014.

Mini-grids for rural electrification of developing countries: Analysis and case studies from South Asia” (ISBN 978-3-319-04816-1); 409 pp. Springer International Publishing. Switzerland. http://www.springer.com/energy/systems,+storage+and+harvesting/book/978-3-319-04815-4.  

  1. Bhattacharyya S. C., Palit D., Sarangi G. K. 2015.

Towards Scaling Up of Electricity Access: Summary and Policy Recommendations from OASYS South Asia Project; 64pp. New Delhi: The Energy and Resources Institute. http://hdl.handle.net/2086/11595   

Scholarly papers (Indexed in Scopus)

  1. Bhattacharyya, S.C., Palit, D. 2021

A critical review of literature on the nexus between central grid and off-grid solutions for expanding access to electricity in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, Renewable & Sustainable Energy Reviews, 141. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rser.2021.110792

  1. Sarangi, G.K., Pugazenthi, D., Mishra, A., Palit, D., Bhattacharyya, S.C. 2020

Marginalisation of the off-grid energy sector in Sri Lanka: What lessons could be learnt? Environment, Development and Sustainability, 22 (6), pp. 5219-5243. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10668-019-00422-4

  1. Winther, T., Ulsrud, K., Matinga, M., Govindan, M., Gill, B., Saini, A., Brahmachari, D., Palit, D., Murali, R. 2020

In the light of what we cannot see: Exploring the interconnections between gender and electricity access, Energy Research and Social Science, 60. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.erss.2019.101334

  1. Sharma, K.R., Palit, D. 2020

A co-evolutionary perspective on decentralised electrification: A solar mini-grid project in India, International Journal of Sustainable Society, 12 (3), pp. 220-237.DOI: 10.1504/IJSSOC.2020.109773

  1. Graber, S., Narayanan, T., Alfaro, J.F., Palit, D. 2019

Perceptions towards solar mini-grid systems in India: A multi-stakeholder analysis; Natural Resources Forum, 43 (4), pp. 253-266. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/1477-8947.12181

  1. Yadav, P., Davies, P.J., Palit, D. 2019

Distributed solar photovoltaics landscape in Uttar Pradesh, India: Lessons for transition to decentralised rural electrification; Energy Strategy Reviews, 26. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esr.2019.100392

  1. Govindan, M., Palit, D., Murali, R., Sankar, D. 2019

Gender in electricity policymaking in India, Nepal, and Kenya; Energy Justice across Borders, pp. 111-135. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-24021-9_6

  1. Bhattacharyya, S.C., Palit, D., Sarangi, G.K., Srivastava, V., Sharma, P. 2019

Solar PV mini-grids versus large-scale embedded PV generation: A case study of Uttar Pradesh (India), Energy Policy, 128, pp. 36-44. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2018.12.040

  1. Yadav, P., Heynen, A.P., Palit, D. 2019

Pay-As-You-Go financing: A model for viable and widespread deployment of solar home systems in rural India, Energy for Sustainable Development, 48, pp. 139-153. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esd.2018.12.005

  1. Ulsrud, K., Rohracher, H., Winther, T., Muchunku, C., Palit, D. 2018

Pathways to electricity for all: What makes village-scale solar power successful? Energy Research & Social Science, 44, pp. 32-40. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.erss.2018.04.027

  1. Muchunku, C., Ulsrud, K., Palit, D., Jonker-Klunne, W. 2018

Diffusion of solar PV in East Africa: What can be learned from private sector delivery models? Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Energy and Environment, 7 (3). DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/wene.282

  1. Graber, S., Narayanan, T., Alfaro, J., Palit, D. 2018

Solar microgrids in rural India: Consumers’ willingness to pay for attributes of electricity, Energy for Sustainable Development, 42, pp. 32-43. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esd.2017.10.002

  1. Barman, M., Mahapatra, S., Palit, D., Chaudhury, M.K. 2017

Performance and impact evaluation of solar home lighting systems on the rural livelihood in Assam, India, Energy for Sustainable Development, 38, pp. 10-20. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esd.2017.02.004

  1. Palit, D., Malhotra, R., Mande, S. 2017

Enhancing viability of biofuel-based decentralized power projects for rural electrification in India, Environment, Development and Sustainability, 19 (1), pp. 263-283. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10668-015-9720-4

  1. Palit, D., Bandyopadhyay, K.R. 2017

Rural electricity access in India in retrospect: A critical rumination, Energy Policy, 109, pp. 109-120. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2017.06.025

  1. Bhattacharyya, S.C., Palit, D. 2016

Mini-grid based off-grid electrification to enhance electricity access in developing countries: What policies may be required? Energy Policy, 94, pp. 166-178. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2016.04.010

  1. Palit, D., Bandyopadhyay, K.R. 2016

Rural electricity access in South Asia: Is grid extension the remedy? A critical review, Renewable & Sustainable Energy Reviews, 60, pp. 1505-1515. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rser.2016.03.034

  1. Sharma, K.R., Palit, D., Krithika, P.R. 2016

Economics and management of off-grid solar PV system, In: Mohanty, P., Muneer, T., Kolhe, M. (eds) Solar Photovoltaic System Applications. Green Energy and Technology. Springer, Cham. pp. 137-164. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-14663-8_6

  1. Palit, D., Bandyopadhyay, K.R. 2015

Regulating off-grid electricity delivery: Exploring the grey areas, Economic and Political Weekly, 50 (10), pp. 46-52. https://www.jstor.org/stable/24481455

  1. Ulsrud, K., Winther, T., Palit, D., Rohracher, H. 2015

Village-level solar power in Africa: Accelerating access to electricity services through a socio-technical design in Kenya, Energy Research and Social Science, 5, pp. 34-44. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.erss.2014.12.009

  1. Ishtiaque, T., Rahman, M.R., Sarkar, M.A.R., Palit, D. 2014

Sustainable energy for all challenges, opportunities & best practices in South Asia, 9th International Forum on Strategic Technology, IFOST 2014, art. no. 6991153, pp. 418-424. DOI: 10.1109/IFOST.2014.6991153

  1. Palit, D., Sarangi, G.K. 2014

Renewable energy programs for rural electrification: Experience and lessons from India, Proceedings of 2014 3rd International Conference on the Developments in Renewable Energy Technology, ICDRET 2014, art. no. 6861705, DOI:10.1109/icdret.2014.6861705

  1. Palit, D., Sarangi, G.K., Krithika, P.R. 2014

Energising Rural India Using Distributed Generation: The Case of Solar Mini-Grids in Chhattisgarh State, India, In Mini-Grids for Rural Electrification of Developing Countries, (eds by S. C. Bhattacharyya and D. Palit); Springer, Cham, pp. 313-342. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-04816-1_12

  1. Sharma, K.R., Palit, D., Mohanty, P., Gujar, M. 2014

Approach for Designing Solar Photovoltaic-Based Mini-Grid Projects: A Case Study from India, In Mini-Grids for Rural Electrification of Developing Countries, (eds by S. C. Bhattacharyya and D. Palit), Springer, Cham, pp. 167-201. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-04816-1_8

  1. Sarangi, G.K., Pugazenthi, D., Mishra, A., Palit, D., Kishore, VVN., Bhattacharyya, S.C. 2014

Poverty Amidst Plenty: Renewable Energy-Based Mini-Grid Electrification in Nepal, In Mini-Grids for Rural Electrification of Developing Countries, (eds by S. C. Bhattacharyya & D. Palit); Springer, Cham, pp. 343-371. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-04816-1_13

  1. Bhattacharyya, S.C., Palit, D., Kishore, V.V.N. 2014

Suite of Off-Grid Options in South Asia, In Mini-Grids for Rural Electrification of Developing Countries, (eds by S. C. Bhattacharyya and D. Palit); Springer, Cham, pp. 11-36. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-04816-1_2

  1. Borah, R.R., Palit, D., Mahapatra, S. 2014

Comparative analysis of solar photovoltaic lighting systems in India, Energy Procedia, 54, pp. 680-689. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.egypro.2014.07.309

  1. Palit, D., Sarangi, G.K. 2014

Renewable energy-based mini-grids for enhancing electricity access: Experiences and lessons from India, Proceedings of the 2014 International Conference and Utility Exhibition on Green Energy for Sustainable Development (ICUE) 2014, pp. 1-8. https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/6828955.

  1. Imai, K., Palit, D. 2014

Impacts of electrification with renewable energies on local economies: The case of India’s rural areas, International Journal of Environmental Sustainability, 9 (2), pp. 1-18. DOI: https://doi.org/10.18848/2325-1077/CGP/v09i02/55082

  1. Palit, D., Sovacool, B.K., Cooper, C., Zoppo, D., Eidsness, J., Crafton, M., Johnson, K., Clarke, S. 2013

The trials and tribulations of the Village Energy Security Programme (VESP) in India, Energy Policy, 57, pp. 407-417. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2013.02.006

  1. Krithika, P.R., Palit, D. 2013

Participatory Business Models for Off-Grid Electrification, In Rural Electrification through Decentralised Off-grid Systems in Developing Countries (ed. S Bhattacharyya), Springer, London, pp. 187-225. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4471-4673-5_8

  1. Palit, D., Chaurey, A. 2013

Off-Grid Rural Electrification Experiences from South Asia, In Rural Electrification through Decentralised Off-grid Systems in Developing Countries (ed. S Bhattacharyya); p 75-104; Springer, London, pp. 75-104. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4471-4673-5_4

  1. Palit, D. 2013

Solar energy programs for rural electrification: Experiences and lessons from South Asia, Energy for Sustainable Development, 17 (3), pp. 270-279. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esd.2013.01.002

  1. Chaurey, A., Krithika, P.R., Palit, D., Rakesh, S., Sovacool, B.K. 2012

New partnerships and business models for facilitating energy access, Energy Policy, 47 (SUPPL.1), pp. 48-55. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2011.06.026

  1. Palit, D., Malhotra, R., Kumar, A. 2011

Sustainable model for financial viability of decentralized biomass gasifier-based power projects, Energy Policy, 39 (9), pp. 4893-4901. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2011.06.026

  1. Palit, D., Chaurey, A. 2011

Off-grid rural electrification experiences from South Asia: Status and best practices, Energy for Sustainable Development, 15 (3), pp. 266-276. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esd.2011.07.004

  1. Ulsrud, K., Winther, T., Palit, D., Rohracher, H., Sandgren, J. 2011

The Solar Transitions research on solar mini-grids in India: Learning from local cases of innovative socio-technical systems, Energy for Sustainable Development, 15 (3), pp. 293-303. DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esd.2011.06.004

  1. Kumar, A., Mohanty, P., Palit, D., Chaurey, A. 2009

Approach for standardization of off-grid electrification projects, Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 13 (8), pp. 1946-1956. 

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rser.2009.03.008

Chapters in Edited Books

  1. Bhattacharyya S C, Palit D. 2019. Enabling Policies for Advancing Sustainability of Electricity Access Programs; In Sustainable Infrastructure: Breakthroughs in Research and Practice; p 1-17; IGI Global, USA
  1. Dhakal S, Srivastava L, Sharma B, Palit D, Mainali B, Nepal R, Purohit P, Goswami A, Malikyar G M, Wakhley K B. 2019. Meeting future energy needs in the Hindu Kush Himalaya; In: Wester P., Mishra A., Mukherji A., Shrestha A. (eds) The Hindu Kush Himalaya Assessment. Springer, Cham
  1. Nygaard I, Hansen U. E, Larsen T. H, Palit D, & Muchunko C. 2018. Off-grid access to electricity innovation challenge. In Accelerating the clean energy revolution – perspectives on innovation challenges: DTU International Energy Report 2018 (pp. 47-54). Technical University of Denmark
  1. Bhattacharyya S C, Palit D. 2017. Energy poverty in Asia; In: Bhattacharyya S C (ed) Routledge Handbook of Energy in Asia (pp 46-61); Routledge
  1. Bhattacharyya S C, Palit D. 2016. Enabling policies for advancing sustainability of electricity access programs; Economic Modelling, Analysis, and Policy for Sustainability (ed: Anandajit Goswami and Arabinda Mishra); IGI Global, USA
  1. Palit D, Bhattacharyya S C and Chaurey A. 2014. Indian Approaches to Energy Access; In Energy Poverty: Global Challenges and Local Solutions (eds Antoine Halff, Benjamin K Sovacool and Jon Rozhon); Oxford University Press, UK (ISBN 978–0–19–968236–2).
  1. Palit D 2008. Ensuring socio-economic development of rural India through electrification; In Rural Development in India, Vol. III (eds K.R. Gupta and Prasenjit Maiti); New Delhi, Atlantic Publishers.
  1.    Palit 2007. Biomass energy resources for rural electrification in Northeast India; In Renewable Energy and Energy Management (edited by S.C. Patra); Lucknow: International Book Distributing Co. 214 pp (ISBN 81-8189-194-5)
  1. Palit D and Hazarika N 2004. Renewable energy programme in Northeast India: Issues, Constraints and Prospects; In Development Dilemma in the Era of Globalization- Reflections from Northeast India (ed. Prof M C Behara); p. 75 -100; New Delhi: Mittal Publications. 
  1. Palit D 2003. Renewable energy in Northeast India: issues and prospects; In Energy Technologies for Sustainable Development (eds. Upender Pandel and M P Poonia); p. 85- 93, Ghaziabad: Prime Publishing House.
  1.    Palit D 2003. Distributed Generation from Renewable Energy Sources in Northeast India: Prospects & Strategies. In GREEN POWER 4- Sustainable Energy Development for Improved Quality of Life; New Delhi: Council of Power Utilities and www.IndiaCore.com; 475pp.

Policy Briefs/Discussion Papers

  1.   Palit, D., M. Shardul and D. Brahmachari. 2021. Clean Fuel for Cooking: Solution to achieve better Air Quality. Policy Brief. New Delhi: The Energy and Resources Institute.https://www.teriin.org/sites/default/files/2021-02/clean-fuel-for-cooking-solutions-pb_0.pdf.
  1. Bhattacharyya S C and Palit D. 2019. The nexus of grids, mini-grids and off-grid options for expanding electricity access; Knowledge Paper, Applied Research Programme on Energy and Economic Growth, Oxford: Oxford Policy Management. https://www.energyeconomicgrowth.org/publication/nexus-grids-mini-grids-and-grid-options-expanding-electricity-access.
  1. Gill B, Gupta A,Palit D. 2019. Rural electrification: Impact on distribution companies in India; New Delhi: The Energy and Resources Institute. https://shaktifoundation.in/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Rural-electrification-impact-on-distribution-companies-in-India.pdf.
  1. Laan T, Viswanathan B, Beaton C, Shardul M, Gill B, Palit D. 2019. Policy approaches for a kerosene to solar subsidy swap in India; Geneva: Global Subsidies Initiative, International Institute for Sustainable Development. https://www.iisd.org/system/files/publications/india-kerosene-solar-swap.pdf.
  1. Gill B, Saluja S, Palit D. 2017. Electricity Pricing and the Willingness to Pay for Electricity in India: Current understanding and the way forward; New Delhi: The Energy and Resources Institute; ISBN: 978-93-86530-08-0; https://www.teriin.org/project/electricity-pricing-and-willingness-pay-electricity-india.  
  1. Palit D, Garimella A, Shardul M and Chaudhury S. 2015. Energy Plus Approach: India Case Study; Analysis of the electrification programme in India using the ‘energy plus’ framework and the key lessons. Report prepared for the Global Network on Energy for Sustainable Development by the Energy and Resources Institute (TERI). 91pp. https://in.one.un.org/wp-content/themes/un-india/pdf/Energy-Plus-Approach.pdf.
  1. Muchunku, C., Ulsrud, K., Winther, T., Palit, D., Kirubi, G., Saini, A., Mauta, W. and Rohracher, H., 2014. The solar energy centre: an approach to village scale power supply. The solar transition project in Kenya.
  1.   Palit D, Sarangi G K. 2014. Renewable energy based rural electrification: The mini-grid experience from India; Global Network on Energy for Sustainable Development, Denmark.https://unepdtu.org/gnesd-launches-new-publication-on-mini-grids-in-india.

           Palit, D, Sovacool B. K, Cooper C, Zoppo D, Eidsness J, Crafton M, Johnson K, and Clarke, S. 2011. Towards Household Energy Security: The Village Energy                 Security Program in India. Energy Governance Case Study #12. Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy

  1.     Debajit Palit and Atul Kumar. 2022. Drivers and barriers to rural electrification in India – A multi‐stakeholder analysis; Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews,                vol. 166, DoI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10668-019-00422-4
  1.    Schiffer, A., Greene, M., Khalid, R., Foulds, C., Vidal, C. A., Chatterjee, M., Dhar-Bhattacharjee, S., Edomah, N., Sule, O.,Palit, D., & Yesutanbul, A. N. 2022. 

            Brokering Gender Empowerment in Energy Access in the Global South. Buildings and Cities, 3(1), pp. 619–637. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5334/bc.236

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