Data metabolism and the reduction environmental harm

Project Lead: Robert Braun
Team: Kira Abstiens, Sabine Neuhofer, Johannes Starkbaum
Duration: 2021–2023
Funding: IHS

Conceived as interdisciplinary research this project aims to understand processes, policies and decisions related to ‘data metabolism’ [digital matter(s) that move in and out of the digital space of an organization, are stored, multiplied, copied – all of which require energy - IHS as case] to raise awareness, inspire behavioural change, and initiate new policies to reduce environmental harm. Exploratory, participant observer and joint research design phases were completed in 2021-2022. The empirical programme (2022-2023) addresses an important research gap and offers a problem that is beneficially attended to by the combined disciplinary vantage points of the two groups. It also serves as an opportunity to blend methods and reflect on the developed interdisciplinary approach.  The final design focuses on a pertinent (environmental) problem and addresses a domain that has relevance on both the level of individual and policy decision making, as well as offers scalable knowledge on institutional and governance levels.