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School of Business | Department of Information and Service Economy | Information Systems Science | 2013
Thesis number: 13231
The potential of IHDS to increase the level of energy efficiency and motivation for household residents: a mass pilot comparison
Author: Yassin, Mazin
Title: The potential of IHDS to increase the level of energy efficiency and motivation for household residents: a mass pilot comparison
Year: 2013  Language: eng
Department: Department of Information and Service Economy
Academic subject: Information Systems Science
Index terms: tietojärjestelmät; information systems; asuminen; housing; energiatalous; energy economy; sähkö; electricity; kulutus; consumption; kuluttajakäyttäytyminen; consumer behaviour; motivaatio; motivation
Pages: 74
Key terms: In-House Displays (IHDs), energy consumption reduction, energy efficiency, feedback information, up-to-date consumption, historical consumption, motivation, feedback content
Objectives of the Study The objective of this study was to determine that factors that primarily have the most effect on a household residents' attitude and activity to energy consumption reduction, specifically through the use of In-House Displays (IHDs). On the first hand, the study elicits the specific mechanisms that best target household residents' motivation in reference to energy consumption. On the other hand, the study has assessed the specific forms of feedback information, and format of presentation, as the primary stimulants for a reduction in energy consumption. The primary motivator for the objective was the Energy Mandate (2020) brought forth by the European Commission that required specific organizational challenges for the Energy Industry, among which was as a more dynamic approach to encourage efficient energy use.

Academic background and methodology Domestic energy consumption is still largely invisible to millions of residents, and is a significant cause of much wastage. Feedback on consumption is essential if we are to achieve energy savings. However, feedback is not always sufficient on its own, sometimes residents need help in interpreting their feedback and in deciding what courses of action to take, but without feedback it is impossible to learn effectively. Darby's three pronged approach identifies the sociological, psychological, and educational strategies of improving, and efficiently targeting, feedback information for household residents. IHDs offer the opportunity for energy companies to provide active information to the households, as a result, IHDs can provide a valuable solution for energy companies to present information to users. Information about consumption presented using IHDs can include up to seven different forms of feedback information, this study compiles and categorises the empirical quantitative data of more than 30 pilots involving over 90,000 residential households, in an attempt to highlight the most efficient forms of feedback.

Findings and conclusions The findings are consistent with Darby's hypothesis that feedback both stimulates and motivates residents to manage their energy consumption more efficiently, as every form of feedback content resulted in an increase of consumption reduction by households. Additionally, the greater the combinations of feedback content provided on the IHD, the greater the levels of consumption reduction, which further illustrated the effect that improved feedback has on energy consumption habits. Additionally, the findings of this study strongly promote the use of feedback information, specifically via IHDs, as a key mechanism of energy consumption reduction. The research has highlighted the three most efficient forms of feedback: up-to-date consumption, historical consumption, and current level of bill, whilst determining comparative peer feedback as the most ineffective.
Master's theses are stored at Learning Centre in Otaniemi.