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The Effects of In-Home Displays — Revisiting the Context

Abstract

In this paper, we investigate the extent to which the use of in-home displays
affects daily practices and electricity consumption. Through two pilot projects, in-home
displays were installed in 33 Norwegian homes, and we provide a qualitative analysis of the
effects. The results point to the potential differences in the ways households interact with
the in-home displays. The effects differed among various groups according to people’s
previous experiences with monitoring and their level of affluence. In the sample, affluent
respondents living in detached houses tended to be accustomed to monitoring consumption
before the display was introduced. These families used the display for controlling that
“nothing was wrong”, but they did not use the information provided by the display to initiate
new energy saving measures. In contrast, among less affluent flat owners the notion of
“control” was specifically linked to the family’s management of finances, and in this sense
the displays empowered them. In addition, the results indicate that the in-home display for
this group resulted in electricity savings. The study adds to earlier research on the effects of
in-home displays by showing the importance of previous experience with monitoring
electricity for the effects of feedback and by highlighting not only energy savings but also
social effects of displays.

Category

Academic article

Client

  • Research Council of Norway (RCN) / 216473
  • Research Council of Norway (RCN) / 209698
  • Research Council of Norway (RCN) / 243947

Language

English

Author(s)

Affiliation

  • CICERO Center for International Climate Research
  • University of Oslo
  • SINTEF Energy Research / Energisystemer

Year

2015

Published in

Sustainability

ISSN

2071-1050

Publisher

MDPI

Volume

7

Issue

5

Page(s)

5431 - 5451

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