This project was carried out as part of my Msc. in Digital Design & Communication at the IT University of Copenhagen, more specifically a course named “Digital Innovation”. The methodology of the course was to use design-thinking and various ethnographic- and design methods to locate an innovation challenge, and thus create valuable concepts for the course-connected stakeholders hereby.

Hence, the course was case-based in the sense, that all the study groups were connected to an external partner with a real-life problem. In our case, we were cooperating with The Municipality of Copenhagen – a major organization with a rather big amount of complexity to navigate.

Our innovation challenge was to be identified within a frame as follows:

How can we innovate on the end-users relationship- and interaction with their usage data?

The end-users are the inhabitants in the capital-region, and their usage data refers to data considering consumption of water, electricity and heat. Sounds sexy, right?

Given the slightly dry subject, a major part of our final concept is shaped by an in-depth understanding of how and why the end-users have the relationship they have to their usage data. Because, you know – it’s simply not that sexy. It is, however, quite important. Therefore we can only change it ever so slightly by this thorough understanding of context, and ultimately reach the the city’s goals to be greener and more usage data-concious.

Hence, the innovation challenge we located through our research is as defined as the following:

The Municipality of Copenhagen do not understand, how they can change citizens’  behaviour regarding energy consumption, by taking advantage of the usage data.

Our final concept was called DataLogik (DataLogic), and focused on getting one aspect of this challenge right – the relation to usage data regarding electricity (in Denmark, the different consumptions have different systems and stakeholders, and therefore we chose to focus on one to keep it realistic). With Datalogik, we allow the citizens to monitor their electrical usage easier through a simple and very old school SMS-based service with a connected online platform. The core is a SMS-notification to the end-user whenever 80% of the intended monthly use is reached. In the sms is also an illustration and a link to the online platform (see the attached pic further down). This video also shows our concept, and elaborates on the whole situation (In danish). If you’re interested, you can also download the final paper on the project here (In danish).

The feedback we received on our pitch of the concept from both lecturers and the connected stakeholders from The Municipality of Copenhagen were generally very positive due to the simplicity of the concept  (for the end-user), and realism and do-ability of the concept.

Feel free to ask me any questions regarding this project, if you are interested in further information.