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  1. 1. Motivating Community-Oriented Behavior through an Online Social Visualization Thesis Defense Catherine Grevet ‘09
  2. 2. Thesis Motivation  Social comparison places an individual in the context of a larger community. Towards a community-oriented goal, contrasting one’s performance to others has motivational effects.  In the context of environmentalism, feedback is important to make people aware of their personal impact. Providing social feedback has an even stronger effect.  However, there lacks research in the area of displaying social data online (social visualization) and environmentalism.
  3. 3.  Developed at Carnegie Mellon University.  The website allows users to commit to green actions and view their carbon and dollar savings over time.  The current visualization only shows personal savings.
  4. 4. Process  Literature review on social visualizations, social comparison and social feedback of energy usage  Iterative design process to create a social visualization that accounts for social comparison  Implementation of the design using Adobe Flex and ActionScript 3.0  Evaluation through a quantitative user study at Wellesley College
  5. 5. Design  Brainstorming about what is motivating:  What dimensions should people be evaluated on?  Should we display history? Overall footprint?  Should we make it collaborative or a competition? How do we compare people’s performance?  RelativeAbsolute?  The data we focus on measuring is action fulfillment (which correspond to CO2 savings) of their committed actions  People should be able to achieve 100%  Unlimited number of participants
  6. 6. Final Design Display of entire community for overview Opacity for conveying performance Different comparison levels Anonymous Personal time graph and action breakdown
  7. 7. Implementation  Developed in Adobe Flex with ActionScript 3.0  Application communicates with the Stepgreen server through fetching and parsing XML files.  Each user has an XML file with the history of their green actions.  For Wellesley College, each dorm has an XML file with the users in each dorm and the summary of the dorm savings.
  8. 8. Study  Hypothesis: People who use the social visualization will be more motivated to perform sustainable actions in their daily lives than those who only receive personal feedback.  Wellesley College dorm competition:  41 participants  All the Wellesley College dorms are represented  21 in the social group and 20 in the individual group  Lasted 5 weeks total (pre-study week and then 4 weeks)  Participants recruited online and through fliers on campus  Data collected:  Survey data: entry and exit survey  website usage data
  9. 9. Survey Results  Transportation  Energy-related behavior
  10. 10. Website Usage Data  Frequency of visits  Commitments to new actions
  11. 11. Website Usage Data  Fulfillments of committed actions
  12. 12. Conclusion  The participants in the social group didn’t change their perception of sustainability more than the individual group butthey did fulfilled more of their green actions than the individual group.  Suggests potential for this type of application for environmentalism and other areas where individuals should be motivated to perform collective-good actions.
  13. 13. Future Work  Implementing a competitive approach where users must be the first to discover the image could have further motivational benefits.  Applying social comparison and social visualization to other areas such as voting, education, health care has potential.  With social networking and social comparison arise issues such as trust and security.  This work can lead to two directions:  Environmentalism and HCI which is starting to gain interest in the community through sustainable interaction.  Social networking for social good: NSF has just launched a $15 million grant in this area.
  14. 14. Work was presented at:  C. Grevet, J. Mankoff. Motivating Sustainable Behavior through Online Social Visualization. To be presented at the workshop on Defining the Role of HCI in the Challenges of Sustainability, CHI 2009.  NEUS and CCSNE poster presentations  Rulhman presentation on Motivating Sustainable Behavior through Online Social Visualization  Poster abstract submitted to BECC  Thesis publication to be submitted to HICSS
  15. 15. Acknowledgements  Scott Anderson  Jen Mankoff and Robert Thompson (CMU)  Orit Shaer, Takis Metaxas and Julie Norem