Information Systems for Sustainability and Global Competitiveness


Driven by concerns regarding environmental sustainability, energy security, and economic growth, a fundamentaltransformation is taking hold in the electricity sector. Advanced communications technologies and information systems (IS)will play a central role in the realization of the ‘smart grid’, an intelligent and multi-directional electricity supply chain fromgeneration to end-user consumption. IS embedded in the smart grid will provide opportunities for improved businesspractices such as dynamic, near real-time demand management, allowing a better utilization of existing electricity supplycapacity and contributing to reductions in carbon emissions. Although opportunities exist, utilities face challenges adapting tothe smart grid environment. Drawing on information processing theory, this paper develops a model of how IS can improvethe effectiveness of electricity demand management. The model suggests practical implications for demand managementperformance of utilities and contributes to our understanding of the role information systems can play in achievingenvironmental sustainability.