Sense4En

Partners: Chair of Energy Efficient Systems, Department of Information Systems, University of BambergAmphiro AGQuality and Usability Lab, Department of Software Engineering and Theoretical Computer Science, TU BerlinCentre for Entrepreneurship, TU BerlinBuilding Technology & Design Group, TU BerlinVattenfall

 

Funded by: The Climate Knowledge and Innovation Community

 

Principal investigator: Thorsten Staake

 

Budget: CHF 113’000

 

Timeframe: Apr 2013 – Dec 2014

 

Research questions: Designing and testing long-term effects of feedback inventions on heat energy usage.

 

Description

 

Households account for one third of the EU-27 final energy consumption, so the case for savings and CO2 emissions reduction is huge. Technology development alone will not be successful, as consumption in households considerably depends on our behavior as individuals, for example when we use technology correctly, choose our room temperature or switch off devices rather than keeping them in stand-by. That is, energy savings in households can be attained and consolidated only if we as users are informed, get actively engaged and consider changing consumption routines. First of all, we must be enabled to recognize the relationship between an action and the consumption it induces. Then, if we have to embrace change, we must see in it a win in terms of life quality, environmental impact and budget. The process itself must be stimulating and challenging, provoking, easy and fun, while conveying the relevance and ambition of attaining savings. First large scale experiments with smart meters – devices to measure and show consumption to the user – prove that the challenge is far from trivial. Sense4En wants to induce a step-change. Learning from experience and focusing on consumers, it implements incentive strategies and robust IT-enabled services rooted in behavioral sciences while accounting for our cultural attitude of amusement-while-doing. And while the general attention is on electricity, Sense4En focuses on Room Heating and Showering. These account for 70% and 13% of energy consumption at home, respectively.