Approaches and Initiatives to Green IT Strategy in Business

Approaches and Initiatives to Green IT Strategy in Business

Amit Goel (RMIT University, Australia), Amit Tiwary (Utilities Industry, Australia) and Heinz Schmidt (RMIT University, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-472-1.ch601


Increasing resource consumption by business organizations is impacting the environment and resulting in changes to climatic patterns. The use of Information Technology (IT) and related systems are further contributing to sustainability issues and challenges within business. Hence it becomes imperative for enterprises to formulate their IT Strategies with green approaches in mind so as to reduce the environmental impact of their IT usage. This chapter discusses the issues and challenges in formulating such strategies with particular emphasis on architecture based approaches to green initiatives. A six step methodology for Green IT strategies for business is also recommended.
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Information Technology (IT) is an integral part of business in current environment. Increasing use of IT contributes significantly to the challenges of carbon emissions control within business. This chapter discusses the strategies and approaches an organization can adopt in terms of its IT usage that will help reduce carbon emissions, and is based on the doctoral research conducted by the lead author. The objective of this chapter is to understand the environmental issues and challenges in context of IT strategy and information systems. A review of relevant literature and discussion is followed by a six step methodology for Green IT strategies for business that also makes use of IT-based architectural approaches.

Table 1 lists various approaches to green IT. This list provides a comprehensive range of green IT initiatives that are focused on a specific aspect of IT and its relation to business.

Table 1.
Approaches to Green IT Strategy
Data CenterApproaches focusing on optimizing the resource utilization in data centers (Aronson, 2008; Courses & Surveys, 2008; Forge, 2007; Patterson, Pratt, & Kumar, 2006; Przybyla & Pegah, 2007; Raghavendra, Ranganathan, Talwar, Wang, & Zhu, 2008; Sukinik, 2006).
Reuse, Refurbish and RecycleApproaches focusing on reusing, recycling and refurbishing various components and equipments (Shevlin, 2008).
Tactical Incremental ApproachApproach focusing on incremental measures in IT Infrastructure (Murugesan, 2007).
Holistic ApproachApproach focusing on Green IT Policies in complete IT Lifecycle (Murugesan, 2008).
Architectural ApproachApproach focusing on making trade-offs and decisions at architectural level (Williams & Curtis, 2008)
Strategic ApproachApproach focusing on green strategic initiative as distinct from other strategic IT initiatives (Murugesan, 2007).
Deep Green ApproachApproach focusing on advanced green strategic initiative such as buying of carbon credits (Murugesan, 2007).
Total Sustainability Indicator ApproachApproach focusing on IT Architecture Framework with Sustainability View and Mathematical Modeling based on Game Theory (Goel, Tiwary, & Schmidt, 2010).

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