5 tips for Green IT and beyond

Posted on September 17, 2010

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Last week the editor of Computerworld set me an interesting challenge: could I come up with “5 tips on what to think about as an IT professional to ensure sustainability”. Here’s the list I sent in, what do you think? (Computerworld’s story Beyond Green IT).

1. Address your own footprint:  Do the low-hanging fruit (recycling etc – but remember that recycling is less preferable than reduce and reuse).

2. Manage to minimise full cost of ownership (what are the power profiles of your systems? do they have effective power management? are they optimised? – these issues may require both technical and behaviour change in tandem).

3. In procurement: aim for swappable/upgradable components, learn to recognise greenwash, address the whole supply chain: be proactive and raise product stewardship (packaging and take-back) with your suppliers.

4. Address your handprint: (doing more good, not just less bad). Actively look for opportunities use ICT to dematerialise commerce and increase efficiencies for all your stakeholders. Think wider than “environment” and promote systems for transparency , social justice and active participation. Start by asking yourself “does our information system support triple bottom line accounting?”.

5. Think about robust business models that sell information not stuff.

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