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Launch of the Energy Access Talent Initiative (EATI)

Working together through EATI, Shortlist and AMI will take a deliberate, youth-centric and gender-equitable approach to upskilling and recruitment for clean energy companies

NAIROBI, Kenya, May 18, 2023/ -- Shortlist and African Management Institute (AMI) announce the launch of the Energy Access Talent Initiative (EATI), a new £2.5 million collaboration dedicated to training and securing employment in the clean energy sector for over 1,600 African youth across sub-Saharan Africa. The initiative is focused on building a strong, diverse workforce of talented young professionals across Africa to expand access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.

The new EATI programme is funded with UK aid from the UK government via the Transforming Energy Access (TEA) platform, and builds on the success of Shortlist and AMI’s Off-Grid Talent Initiative (OGTI), also backed by TEA, with support from the University of Cape Town ( The OGTI programme ran from 2019-2021 and supported nearly 900 young professionals in over 100 energy companies across 23 African countries. The initiative had a 55% female participation rate with 94% of placements by Shortlist converting to permanent jobs, and 99% of participating companies in AMI’s management programmes reporting improved personnel performance. 

“Education is no longer enough to guarantee a job; young people need on-the-job experience. Programs like this bridge the gap between education and real, career-track employment – and renewable energy and climate are poised to create more jobs on the continent than any other sector in the next decade,” Paul Breloff, CEO of Shortlist.

Lack of skilled talent prepared to manage rapid growth is a significant barrier to scale in the emerging market clean energy sector – a huge, missed opportunity given the potential for Africa’s clean energy companies both to transform the continent’s climate future, and to create hundreds of thousands of jobs for youth.

"AMI and Shortlist have pioneered a practical, proven and scalable solution to talent development for the clean energy sector. The renewed TEA funding will enable us to scale this approach to reach even more young professionals," said Rebecca Harrison, Co-Founder and CEO of AMI. "We've replaced traditional, ineffective hit-and-run training with a coherent approach to upskilling and job placement that will equip and inspire the next generation of African talent to accelerate Africa's just energy transition,” said Rebecca Harrison, cofounder and CEO of AMI.

Working together through EATI, Shortlist and AMI will take a deliberate, youth-centric and gender-equitable approach to upskilling and recruitment for clean energy companies. Shortlist will work with clean energy companies to identify talent gaps. It then addresses these labour shortages by raising awareness and excitement around emerging careers in clean energy through marketing campaigns, and then putting young people with little or no work experience into "last mile" on-the-job experiences”.

AMI will support young people placed by Shortlist with professional skills and work readiness training. The company will also offer practical leadership development programmes for emerging female leaders and middle managers already working in the sector, accelerating career growth and closing the talent gap, especially for under-represented young women.

“We are delighted to be supporting Shortlist and AMI on the next phase of their talent recruitment and training work following an impactful and well received first phase. In EATI, our partners have focussed more on supporting those most in need, increasing impact and value for money of UK aid and integrating their activity into the rest of the Transforming Energy Access programme to ensure that the results are more than the sum of its parts,” said David Aitken, TEA, Programme Director.