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Trends, Pressures and Factors that affect Data Center Management taking Environmental Sustainability into Account

Papadopoulos, Charalampos LU and Wurm, Andreas LU (2012) INFM03 20121
Department of Informatics
Abstract
Information and Communications Technology is an increasing factor in the everyday life, whether this is private or public. In coherence with this, reports and research presents the contribution to effects in terms of pollution, such as greenhouse gas emissions and electronic waste. Current reports state that the agendas of enterprises, governments and societies increasingly include how to tackle environmental problems and how to adopt new environmental practices. The research in the area of data
centers, who consume about 2% of energy that is produced worldwide mainly focuses on technological solutions. The research of to what extent sustainability actually plays a role in data centers in terms of affecting operations management decisions... (More)
Information and Communications Technology is an increasing factor in the everyday life, whether this is private or public. In coherence with this, reports and research presents the contribution to effects in terms of pollution, such as greenhouse gas emissions and electronic waste. Current reports state that the agendas of enterprises, governments and societies increasingly include how to tackle environmental problems and how to adopt new environmental practices. The research in the area of data
centers, who consume about 2% of energy that is produced worldwide mainly focuses on technological solutions. The research of to what extent sustainability actually plays a role in data centers in terms of affecting operations management decisions has not been studied extensively. In this report we aimed to identify trends, pressures and incorporated factors that affect these decisions. Furthermore, we wanted to explore
the prominence of sustainability regarding the data center operation. Thus, we strived to provide a model as a starting point for further investigation in research and as an initial guide for practitioners. We have created our decision making research model, after carrying out a literature review and used it as a guide to further lead us through our process of gathering empirical data.

The main trends that were identified in the empirical data were Virtualization and Cloud Computing. Furthermore, the main pressures in regard to strategic operations decisions were Service Availability, Costs and Customers (Internal/External).

This was then also found in the identified factors that inherited these trends and pressures. These include Availability, Cooling, Costs, Reliability, Technology, Organizational Management, Security, Customers (Internal/External), Speed, Virtualization, Facilities, Energy Consumption, Data Center Management, Location, Human Resources, Quality Management, Storage, Consolidation and Service Level Agreements.

It was found that environmental sustainability is to a large amount seen as a biproduct of the aim for general efficiency in data centers among the interviewees. More prominence was assigned to the task in large organizations that were pressured by investors or directly exposed to markets and the pressures from their customers. Only these were found to have a Green Strategy that actively influences their decisions including e.g. “Green IT, e-waste and so on. Also, the organizations that had costs as their main pressure were not fond of ‘Green’ solutions, as their main goals are, although different according to their background of the organization, in the area of availability, reliability and security. The difference between what is possible in the area, as pointed out in the first part of the thesis, and in the data center role models that assign large amounts of resources to address these issues, and organizations that
participated in the research was founds to be large. In terms of factors related to environmental sustainability Costs, Energy Consumption, Cooling and Recycle was identified being paid the most attention to by the interviewees. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Papadopoulos, Charalampos LU and Wurm, Andreas LU
supervisor
organization
course
INFM03 20121
year
type
H1 - Master's Degree (One Year)
subject
keywords
data centers, data center management, environmental sustainability, strategic operations decisions
report number
INF12-005
language
English
id
2770601
date added to LUP
2012-06-15 08:30:37
date last changed
2012-06-15 08:30:37
@misc{2770601,
  abstract     = {Information and Communications Technology is an increasing factor in the everyday life, whether this is private or public. In coherence with this, reports and research presents the contribution to effects in terms of pollution, such as greenhouse gas emissions and electronic waste. Current reports state that the agendas of enterprises, governments and societies increasingly include how to tackle environmental problems and how to adopt new environmental practices. The research in the area of data
centers, who consume about 2% of energy that is produced worldwide mainly focuses on technological solutions. The research of to what extent sustainability actually plays a role in data centers in terms of affecting operations management decisions has not been studied extensively. In this report we aimed to identify trends, pressures and incorporated factors that affect these decisions. Furthermore, we wanted to explore
the prominence of sustainability regarding the data center operation. Thus, we strived to provide a model as a starting point for further investigation in research and as an initial guide for practitioners. We have created our decision making research model, after carrying out a literature review and used it as a guide to further lead us through our process of gathering empirical data.

The main trends that were identified in the empirical data were Virtualization and Cloud Computing. Furthermore, the main pressures in regard to strategic operations decisions were Service Availability, Costs and Customers (Internal/External).

This was then also found in the identified factors that inherited these trends and pressures. These include Availability, Cooling, Costs, Reliability, Technology, Organizational Management, Security, Customers (Internal/External), Speed, Virtualization, Facilities, Energy Consumption, Data Center Management, Location, Human Resources, Quality Management, Storage, Consolidation and Service Level Agreements.

It was found that environmental sustainability is to a large amount seen as a biproduct of the aim for general efficiency in data centers among the interviewees. More prominence was assigned to the task in large organizations that were pressured by investors or directly exposed to markets and the pressures from their customers. Only these were found to have a Green Strategy that actively influences their decisions including e.g. “Green IT, e-waste and so on. Also, the organizations that had costs as their main pressure were not fond of ‘Green’ solutions, as their main goals are, although different according to their background of the organization, in the area of availability, reliability and security. The difference between what is possible in the area, as pointed out in the first part of the thesis, and in the data center role models that assign large amounts of resources to address these issues, and organizations that
participated in the research was founds to be large. In terms of factors related to environmental sustainability Costs, Energy Consumption, Cooling and Recycle was identified being paid the most attention to by the interviewees.},
  author       = {Papadopoulos, Charalampos and Wurm, Andreas},
  keyword      = {data centers,data center management,environmental sustainability,strategic operations decisions},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Trends, Pressures and Factors that affect Data Center Management taking Environmental Sustainability into Account},
  year         = {2012},
}