Opower essay

Principles of User Interface Design Interfaces exist to enable interaction between humans and our world. They can help clarify, illuminate, enable, show relationships, bring us together, pull us apart, manage our expectations, and give us access to services. The act of designing interfaces is not art and they are not monuments unto themselves.

Opower essay

Share via Email It is difficult to imagine how a campaign to reduce private car use could harness the power of social norms when the vast majority of people regularly choose this method of transportation.

In laboratory studies and more applied, practical settings, providing people with evidence of what others around them are doing has been shown to have a significant effect on behaviour. For example, Robert Cialdini one of the leading proponents of social norms research ran a series of studies showing that when hotel guests were informed that other people on their floor had reused their bath towels, they were more likely to reuse them too.

•Four main components oEnergy storage system (battery) oMotor oTransmission oPower Electrics Module •Precisely speed controlled o0 to 60 mph in 4 seconds oTop speed up to mph •Reduce wear on brake system •No gearboxes •No torque converters •Less noise and vibration •Less lubrication •Simple repairs but expensive CONCLUSION Many challenges are still laid ahead for this new . This dissertation consists of three essays that provide insights into the economics of water across different dimensions of the resource and its role in the state of California. The first essay examines the social welfare impacts of variation in irrigation supplies that are available through major. b. The military strength or economic or political influence of a nation or other group: That country projects its power throughout the region.

And academic research like this is now being put into practice by the energy company Opowerwho have used simple social norm strategies to achieve small but consistent savings on home energy use with their US customers. Opower's approach is deceptively simple: Working with the government's Behavioural Insight team, Opower are now trialling similar techniques in the UK.

The hope is that when combined with improvements to household insulation made possible through the government's "green deal", significant reductions in energy use will be achieved.

However, although social norms are a tried and tested method of influencing behaviour, their effectiveness hinges on positive norms being available for promoting in the first place.

For many sustainable behaviours, the problem is not that positive social norms aren't being highlighted, but that the norms are simply not there to promote.

Car use is a pertinent example: And even for behaviours where appeals to positive social norms are possible, they are likely to be drowned out by the torrent of messages promoting unsustainable behaviours from the advertising industry.

Opower essay

As a recent report by the Public Interest Research Centre and WWF argued, advertising has a doubly negative impact from the perspective of sustainability: So while positive environmental norms can be valuable tools for promoting sustainable behaviour, it is an uphill struggle to foster them in the first place.

This highlights the need for more active methods of engagement than simply highlighting convenient statistics about other people's behaviour. As well as identifying instances where progress is already being made, making the case for behaviour change is also critical.

There are other ways of using social norms that don't rely on pointing to a "silent majority" who are already engaging in a particular behaviour.

The Wasting Water is Weird campaign uses a series of short videos to position wasting water as something only "weird" people do. In the videos, a vaguely menacing character called Rip enthuses about wasting water, while someone "ordinary" wastes water by, for example, leaving the tap on while brushing their teeth.

The obvious implication is that if you waste water, you are as socially undesirable as Rip. In this campaign, social norms are being deployed to make a "bad" behaviour appear to be the choice of a minority, neatly getting around the problem of no obvious "good" social norms being readily available.

But there is a risk with this type of approach too: Social norms are a vital tool for promoting pro-environmental behaviour. But deploying them is more complex than it may first appear.

As well as the struggle against the negative sustainability norms promoted in the majority of advertising campaigns, there are hidden pitfalls that mean the impact of social norm campaigns may backfire.

Social norms are a fantastic method of amplifying the influence of existing good behaviours — but they can't bring about these good behaviours on their own.

This means that social norm approaches have to be combined with more direct engagement strategies to be effective. First the right norms need to be created — then the power of social norm strategies can be fully realised.

Adam Corner is a research associate at Cardiff University. His interests include the psychology of communicating climate change This content is brought to you by Guardian Professional. Become a GSB member to get more stories like this direct to your inbox Topics.Opower, the global leader in customer engagement solutions for the utility industry, today announced the availability of its new Behavioral Demand Response (BDR) solution.

Opower BDR enables.

Opower essay

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