Sign in or
Exploring the sustainable knowledge commons. (Faculty Hall)
Opportunity for Sharing Sustainability Materials? - e.g. open source software (like Mozilla -http://www.mozilla.com/en-US/firefox/firefox.html); different types of commons designed to meet different ends, but you need to make sharing valuable to each individual player.
James Boyle (professor at Duke -http://www.law.duke.edu/fac/boyle/)
http://sciencecommons.org/- for science, but could something like this, a green patent pool, work? Getting ways for people to share things on sustainability - intellectual commons.Ought to be feasible, but barriers are fear, coordination and consistency problems.
Other questions/concernsare: how can you share this information with competitors, or whomever, without making your job in sustainability redundant?
Other issues is that there is a first-mover disadvantage - the learning curve is steep and it is easier to watch your competitors go in first, take their lessons and then build on them when you enter the market. Will too much sharing take away from the benefits of competitiveness?How can we give incentives to companies to share technologies that have pro sustainability effects? This is whathttp://www.greenexchange.com/is doing.
Indicators of "commons-able" projects? Different kinds of incentives and structures. Very expensive to produce first piece of knowledge; cheap to share. People have to see benefits (make us look like a good corporate citizen) or we'll get benefit from others sharing in return. Positive yield for every additional participant - programs become more valuable, more beta testers, more people know and use them.
Commons is exhaustable resource usually, but is this appropriate for sustainability?
Control over how the users use the information or is it a free for all (e.g. human genomehttp://www.ornl.gov/sci/techresources/Human_Genome/home.shtml)?
EPA shares information (eg LCA tool/model for free for municipalities), but sometimes ineffectually. They post developments on their website, but nobody knows to go there - need marketing and distribution channels. Perhaps there is a way to create a group around this kind of information. People started using Mozilla by word of mouth.
Internet works on shared standards - open and shared - allowing internet to spread fast and far. You could make any business model on top of this.
Musicians want to be heard, but with non-commercial restriction. But in terms of education - how are people teaching calculus in Europe or Africa? - no restriction on commerciality so that it can reach developing countries. You have to figure out what the dynamics of the system that you're trying to create are.
Firefox - was there a for-profit business model at the heart of the company ever? Owned by a foundation; get 50 million/yr from Google, because Google is the default page that comes up. People support the infrastructure because they think that they can make money from it, not because the infrastructure brings them money. Is this a sustainable model?
Another idea is making a business model similar to what ESCOs do - creating values for the companies, you can get a margin of that to continue the information dissemination.
Ideas on getting going -
1. pick the low hanging fruit - choose a first project that will make people look good and save them lots of money. Then you can tell a compelling story about it and attract interest. 2.Show how the open platform created and led to new businesses.
Because you need to get over the inertia. Need some positive story you could share in an elevator.
Difference between having life cycle analysis tool versus doing a life cycle analysis allows entrepreneurs into the space. Motivators could be labelling, carbon, corporate sustainability initiatives - several different business applications.
Target an industry or sector first - then look to see, does it then translate to other sectors?
GE has a sustainabilty competition. Teams go out to track their factories "treasure hunts" and come up with energy savings. Educational and experiential opportunity to engage employees. This could be expanded to a state-wide competition including other companies with other . GE methodology might be used, with support of DoE, to get off the ground. More info on GE's program:http://www.greenerbuildings.com/blog/2009/05/13/how-ges-treasure-hunts-discovered-more-110m-energy-savingsDoes the market want this?
Maybe, but you have a fraction of a fraction of people's attention, so how can you direct people to what they're looking for efficiently?
Latest page update: made by lkw12
, Jan 28 2010, 11:54 AM EST
(about this update
About This Update
Edited by lkw12
31 words added
33 words deleted
- complete history)
More Info: links to this page