As fossil fuel reserves are limited in stock and there is an urgent call to reduce the carbon footprint, distribution grids urgently need to move towards heavy use of local and distributed generation of electricity using renewable energy sources. Another promising prospect for the future of the planet is wide adoption of electric cars. However, large-scale integration of these highly volatile resources in distribution grids is challenging: distribution grids may face power quality problems and fuel-based generators may be needed to compensate for high volatility (which defeats the original purpose). Additionally, with the large penetration of solar and wind energy, the grid becomes inverter-dominated (has little inertia) and therefore traditional methods for controlling the frequency, voltage, and congestion of lines are no longer sufficient. In this article, we present different activities carried out in our research groups to tackle above-mentioned challenges in large- scale integration of such volatile resources. These activities range from advance planning to real-time monitoring and operation of distribution grids. We have also developed a software testbed, called T-RECS, for testing software agents before deploying them in the field. Finally, as the reliability and robustness is very crucial in such critical infrastructures, we have developed some reliability solutions that are suitable for use case scenarios typical to distribution grids.