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Peter Haas

Peter Haas

Appropriate Infrastructure Development Group
Peter Haas received a BA in 1998 from Yale University in philosophy and psychology and is the Founder and Executive Director of AIDG. He received a BA in 1998 from Yale University in philosophy and psychology. AIDG is a new international development organization aimed at incubating for profit enterprises to provide affordable and environmentally sound access to energy, sanitation and clean water for low income populations. Peter was named one of Echoing Green’s Social Entrepreneurs of the Year in 2006, and his work with AIDG has been featured in Fast Company, Salon.com, and NPR. Before founding AIDG he worked both in the information technology field as a consultant in network topology and wireless, and on a sustainable organic farm doing infrastructure improvement work. He is an avid speaker on poverty and technology design issues with keynotes and panels at Harvard, MIT, Yale, Popular Mechanics, The World Bank, and green design judging experience for the US Environmental Protection Agency.

AIDG uses market mechanisms to get green technologies to people earning less than four US Dollars a day. AIDG combines product design, small enterprise incubation, and traditional outreach projects as a means to train the next generation of infrastructure service providers for poor communities.

AIDG provides their enterprises with $10,000-$100,000 in loans, training in technical and business skills, and access to engineering talent from top international universities. We also contract these SMEs to do a few traditional aid outreach projects as training and help them build a clientele among local villages and foreign NGOs.

A pilot enterprise, XelaTeco, in Guatemala is on track to earn $250,000 off a $55,000 loan from AIDG, installing hydroelectric, solar, biodiesel and stove systems in rural communities. To date XelaTeco has electrified four Guatemalan communities and provided renewable energy to a few thousand individuals. Currently, AIDG is in the process of securing funding partners to incubate 10 other enterprises like XelaTeco in Guatemala and Haiti over the next few years.

Their technology design work has forged partnerships with teams from prestigious US universities, including MIT, UC Berkeley and Stanford. We provide paid consulting services to for-profits looking to design products for the bottom of the pyramid and are currently completing tests on what could become the world’s cheapest small wind generator with Humdinger Wind Energy, winner of last year’s Popular Mechanics Innovation Awards.