Files in this item



video/mp420110404-Butner.mp4 (303MB)
Video recording of Scott Butner's seminar on April 4, 2011MPEG-4 video


Title:Social Science Modeling and Sustainability
Author(s):Butner, Scott
human behavior
climate change
social science
Abstract:Scott Butner - Senior Research Scientist, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Knowledge Systems Group. While the sustainable use of natural resources certainly poses some tremendous technological challenges, many if not most researchers working in the area of sustainability will acknowledge that technological progress alone is not sufficient to bring resource demands and supply into a sustainable balance. Meaningful progress towards sustainable economies (especially in developed nations), or even simply meeting realistic greenhouse gas emissions targets, is expected to also require substantial behavioral change at both the business and individual level. These necessary changes are wide-ranging, affecting everything from personal comfort to commuting patterns and leisure activities. Indeed, history suggests that improved energy and material efficiency - seen as fundamental elements of a sustainable economy - often result in increased demand for energy or related services, as consumers find it more economically viable to use more of a resource as efficiency climbs. For example, efficiency improvements in home air conditioning units seem to correlate with greater use of air conditioning even in climates where these units previously had not been widely utilized. This tendency to see efficiency gains as an opportunity to use more of a service presents a significant challenge to the effectiveness of conservation programs in meeting sustainability and climate change goals. Understanding how human behavior and technology interact with one another is the key focus of the Technosocial Predictive Analytics Initiative (TPAI) at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Scott Butner discussed how this work has been applied to issues in climate change, energy efficiency and sustainability and how ongoing work stemming from the initiative is being used to examine related issues relevant to pollution prevention and energy efficiency.
Issue Date:2011-04-04
Genre:Presentation / Lecture / Speech
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-08-26

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Item Statistics