Energy reform is highly political, and any attempts to support sector reform without an understanding of the domestic and international political landscape are likely to fail. Whilst all politics are defined by local circumstances, useful learning is emerging on how to build political commitment and maintain it through the reform process. This paper seeks to draw out the particular political challenge of energy reform, considers what has worked to get initial political buy in and, in a second section, shares examples of how tactics can be applied to secure and then maintain commitment through specific, politically sensitive reforms.