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Authors:Örjan Svane: Environmental Strategies Research - fms, Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden
Publication title:Helping; Informing or Coaxing the Consumer?: Exploring Persuasive Technology as Applied to Households´ Energy Use
Conference:Proceedings of the Sustaining Everyday Life Conference: April 22–24 2009; Campus Norrköping; Sweden
Publication type: Abstract
Issue:038
Article No.:013
Abstract:Let us assume; that people could be persuaded to reduce their energy use in the home through a “dialogue” with a computer. What information; what means of persuasion could the dialogue consist of? Which is the technical hardware? Who persuades; and what about personal integrity? In this paper we explore the merging of two computer-based technologies – “smart homes” and “persuasive technology”.

There are computer programmes that persuade children to brush their teeth; and others that support regular physical exercise: Persuasive technology combines the persuasive powers of TV advertising with the computers’ interactive information handling. Smart homes technology provides residents with information and control; to keep a good indoor climate and a small energy bill. However; the merging of these two concepts has not been explored. Energy use in housing is a considerable part of society’s whole and the potentials for reduction through changes in the consumers’ habits are large. Often; dwellings’ indoor climate could become better through simple measures. There might be a conflict between low energy use and good indoor climate; but on the whole; better control can achieve both. Therefore it is worthwhile to explore how “smart homes” technology could be developed to include computerized persuasion.

Based on a “Master’s Class” at TU Eindhoven and a literature review; we discuss:

  • How can households be persuaded to reduce their energy use through interaction with a computer?
  • Which are the technical prerequisites?
  • How much could be saved?
  • What forms could the persuasive dialogue take?
  • What differences in control and persuasion follow from the form of tenure?
  • Which are the ethical restrictions?

We don’t assume that this kind of persuasion is by necessity a good thing. Instead; we explore the issue to enable discussion on its merits and shortcomings – in terms of environmental impacts; comfort; health; technology and consumer ethics.

Paper published in: Svane Ö. (2009) Helping; Informing or Coaxing the Consumer? – Exploring Persuasive Technology as Applied to Households’ Energy Use; Varma A 2008: Domotics: Smart Technology; Smarter Homes; ICFAI.

Language:English
Year:2009
No. of pages:2
Pages:83-84
Series:Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings
ISSN (print):1650-3686
ISSN (online):1650-3740
File:http://www.ep.liu.se/ecp/038/013/ecp0938013.pdf
Available:2010-11-05
Publisher:Linköping University Electronic Press; Linköpings universitet

REFERENCE TO THIS PAGE
Örjan Svane (2009). Helping; Informing or Coaxing the Consumer?: Exploring Persuasive Technology as Applied to Households´ Energy Use, Proceedings of the Sustaining Everyday Life Conference: April 22–24 2009; Campus Norrköping; Sweden http://www.ep.liu.se/ecp_article/index.en.aspx?issue=038;article=013 (accessed 10/2/2014)