Engaging With (Renewable) Technologies – Roadblocks and Triggers

Abstract

Engaging with (Renewable) Technologies - Roadblocks and Triggers research aims at developing of new insights in relation to how existing familiar technologies influence peoples' engagement with, and adoption of renewable technologies. The goal is to inform on potential ways of changing peoples' behaviour and attitude towards adopting more sustainable practices in terms of producing energy and food, while improving their wellbeing.
For the purpose of the study, six automated enclosures were built across different locations in Dublin, Ireland. Air temperature, humidity, and soil moisture sensors, all connected to an Arduino controller board, are probing conditions inside each enclosure. Automation features were added – windows, fans, irrigation – in order to try and keep the climate within optimal values for growing vegetables. The electricity is provided by photovoltaic solar panels. A custom mobile phone app was developed, so that participants can remotely monitor and interact with the enclosures, via the internet. The study observes grounded theory guidelines, and in order to produce high-quality, reliable results pending data analysis, employs a constructivist approach by resorting on inductive and reflexive methods, as well as on concepts such as "data and methodological triangulation" (Denzin), adoption and diffusion of innovations theory (Everett). The paper presents initial findings from data gathered throughout the first half of the study duration. The qualitative data was collected via focus groups and in-depth interviews, while the quantitative data was produced following participants' interactions with the enclosures via the mobile app.
Additional information can be found at http://eyeduinoproject.online/



Author Information
Hamilton Viorel Niculescu, Dublin City University, Ireland

Paper Information
Conference: ECAH2019
Stream: Humanities - Science

This paper is part of the ECAH2019 Conference Proceedings (View)
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