Power Systems Planning at the World Bank

Latest Project: 2023

The World Bank is a global institution that provides financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. One of its primary areas of focus is the development of infrastructure, including electricity generation and distribution. To support this work, the World Bank has developed the Electricity Planning Model (EPM), a sophisticated tool for modeling the energy sector in developing countries.

Recently, the World Bank partnered with GAMS to improve the EPM. The project involved several key aspects, including model improvement, model deployment, and training and workshops.

Model Improvement:

The first phase of the project involved a comprehensive review of the EPM. GAMS worked closely with the World Bank team to understand the model’s strengths and weaknesses and identify areas for improvement. Based on this analysis, GAMS revised the EPM and updated it with the latest GAMS features, resulting in significant performance improvements:

Time Improvement Factor
GAMS Time 26.5x
Model Generation 10.0x
Reporting Time 36.1x

Model Deployment:

The second phase of the project focused on model deployment. GAMS worked with the World Bank team to make the EPM suitable for cloud environments. This involved the development of a GAMS MIRO application for the EPM which was customized to meet the exact needs of the World Bank, including custom renderers and input widgets, extensive error checks, powerful pivot tables, and other features to improve usability. The MIRO app runs as an interactive server application accessible to all members of the modeling group. The World Bank team can now utilize the app to work with the EPM and run simulations on various scenarios, enabling them to make informed decisions on energy sector development.

Input screen and Dashboard of the EPM GAMS MIRO application

Fig 1: EPM GAMS MIRO Application

Input screen and Dashboard of the EPM GAMS MIRO application

Training & Workshops:

The third aspect of the project involved customized workshops on topics according to the World Bank’s needs, aimed at enhancing the team’s understanding of the new features and optimizing their use of the EPM. Among other things, GAMS provided training on how to use the updated model, as well as how to deploy and scale it in the cloud. This training was crucial in ensuring that the World Bank team can fully leverage the new model setup.

Another result of this collaboration: The World Bank now uses GAMS Engine Saas for their daily model calculations, allowing them to switch between different instance sizes easily. This allows the Bank to meet its energy modeling needs efficiently and cost-effectively, further enabling it to provide reliable and affordable electricity to all people worldwide.