Durability 2.0

iFlickrWe all know we have to be very careful with energy due to the warming up of our planet, dependency on energy from areas in the world you do not want to be dependant on and other reasons. But we also know that it is very hard to find the incentives to stimulate people to save energy here and now. Problem is that there is too much of a time lag between the action to save energy and the advantages acquired.
Recently I held a key note presentation at the conference “Greening the enterprise 2.0“, focused on how to save energy in office environments. Especially in offices it is hard to stimulate people to save energy because they do not have to pay the energy bill themselves. Automatic systems are usually circumvented (people open windows in completely controlled buildings because the intelligent control mechanism for temperature is less intelligent than the maker thought) and therefore seldom delivers the result that we think of beforehand.
And people are lazy. The picture on this post is from my own re-chargers in my office. I once placed a switch there to switch of the electricity. But after two cases of dead batteries that I needed at that moment I always have it switched on.
Focus of my presentation was how to use social networking aspects to stimulate people to save energy. By sharing best practices but also by more direct feedback on individual actions and results (and some peer pressure maybe …).
Here are the sheets.

Social netWORKing

Being the center of your networkOne of the most fascinating developments there are at the moment at the workplace is I think the use of social networking tools. What can ben seen in several reports is that the use of social networking tools (for example to find the right person for a task) is growing rapidly within companies (Funny thing is that in many cases this is happening completely below the radar of the IT department). The tools are used for example to find the right person with the right expertise as close by in your network as possible. Directly based on previous work done by people like reports they wrote, memberships of communities, questions they answered etc. Maybe even based on the emails you sent to specific people though in this respect there are of course issues on privacy that we have to deal with
IBM is developing some quite interesting applications around lotus connections dealing with social networking. Recently they have developed a tool called Atlas that is capable of showing you your network, how it relates to the subjects you are dealing, with and how to reach people. Important is that this information is also showed in relation to the company structure and (other) communities.
What I especially like about developments like these is that it gives the individuals in an organisation the power to create their own network besides the structure of the organisation. Links are being made that work instead of links that are made to control power (or am I being naive and will it still be used to do that?). I think due to the transparancy it will give the individual more power to reach his goals based on achievement instead of organisational position. People can create their own organisation that supports their work within the overall organisation. This leads to fascinating possibilities.
Of course their are lots of questions on how this will work. How do we deal with privacy, will the organisation not use the transparency to discipline people instead of giving them more freedom. What is the role of management in structures like these?