Summary of the first book - Computing Research for Sustainability

Chapter 1. Roles and opportunities for information technology in meeting sustainability challenges.

Chapter 1 concentrates to the positions and possibilities of IT to solve or create and answer to sustainability issues. It goes through the possibilities to accomplish major sustainability missions and discusses these from the perspective of constructed infrastructure and systems, ecosystems and the environment and sociotechnical systems. Chapter 1 brings things to concrete level by describing samples of IT and sustainability working together, such as smarter electric grid, sustainable food systems and sustainable & resilient infrastructure. Chapter 1 discusses and enlarges the areas where IT can have an impact on in order to define and describe the role and the possible chances of IT to address the sustainability issues. More specifically the chapter concentrates to defining the methods and where can computing research have a quantifiable and considerable affect.

As a result of the chapter 1 bring out and propose through examples that IT and CS have the opportunity to play a key role in a large variety of global sustainability issues or challenges. The chapter brings out through examples of sustainable infrastructure, sustainable food system etc. that what type of attempts are required towards sustainability and ICT. Nevertheless particular issues are strongly multidimensional and oblige innovation within various areas of computing and also profound are understanding and knowledge. Sustainability includes a large variety of areas but at the same time most of these issues have the same challenges of; scale, heterogeneity, interconnection, architecture, optimization and human interaction with systems. This is also a key problem from CS research. A comprehensive answer to global sustainability issues requires thorough political, economic and cultural changes.

Chapter 2. Elements of a Computer Science Research Agenda for Sustainability

Chapter 2 concentrates to the components of CS research agenda regarding sustainability. It portrays techniques and approaches in deliberating the issues of “how do the basic research questions and approaches within computing cross with sustainability issues” and “how can issue resolving and research methodologies within computing research and IT innovations can be used to support sustainability”. The national research committee especially sees supporting, informing, facilitating and even automating decision making (decision making that directs to actions that will have an important influence towards accomplishing sustainability missions) as an important target of CS regarding sustainability. Chapter to concentrates to four large research areas; 1 measurement and instrumentation, 2 information intensive systems, 3 Analysis, modeling, simulation, and optimization 4 Human-centered systems. These research areas are seen as arranging themes for research programs and also research areas that have the possibility to have a considerable positive affect towards sustainability.

1 Measurement and instrumentation Concentrates to themes of; managing with self-defining physical information, the design and capacity planning of physical information services and software stacks for physical infrastructures.

2 Information-intensive systems This area focuses to data and deal with, big data, heterogeneity of data, dealing with the requirement for data proxies, dealing with biased and noisy data and dealing with multisource of data streams.

4 Analysis, modeling, simulation, and optimization This area focuses to models and decision-making, thus important matters that are dealt with are; developing and applying multiscale models, combining statistical and mechanistic models and making decisions under uncertainty.

4 Human-centered systems This area focuses to human-centered systems. Matters that are dealt with are: Supporting deliberation, civic engagement, education, and community Action, Design for sustainability Human understanding of sensing, modeling, and simulation Tools to help organizations and individuals engage in more sustainable behavior Mitigation, adaption, and disaster response Using information from resource-usage sensing,

The Chapter 2 does not offer a complete list of issues that have to be solved but instead offers examples of the type of work that develops CS and at the same time has the opportunity to develop sustainability missions significantly. Nevertheless as stated in the beginning the chapter 2 contributes heavily towards research in CS and sustainability. The four areas presented above are complements towards developed and well-established research areas within CS. Chapter 2 also indicates that sustainability challenges consists of issues that the current methods can only provide an incomplete answer, at the same time there are countless possibilities to apply current technologies and techniques to sustainability. Also innovations are highlighted to be in a key position towards the issues of sustainability. In order to have answers to larger issues that can only be solved partially there has to be a way to discover novel approaches and -ways to conduct and manage research. Centrality of data and information play a key role regarding sustainability!

Chapter 3. Programmatic and institutional opportunities to enhance computer science research for sustainability

Chapter 3 focuses to CS research regarding sustainability. Chapter three concentrates to discussing about the interaction amongst tackling sustainability issues and CS research deserves attention and how this interaction provides thorough and convincing possibilities for development within variety of dimensions. The chapter investigates methods of performing and managing research in order to achieve better affect regarding sustainability issues through CS research. Chapter also discusses that computer science research should be notified with thorough knowledge, input and context from domain professionals in order to have the greatest affect towards the pushing issues that the world faces today.

More thoroughly chapter 3 discovers possible obstacles regarding CS for achieving significant development about the challenges relevant for sustainability. Chapter deliberates how to combine and overcome the space that exists amongst classical research mission for universality and the essential to accomplish a certain affect on sustainability challenges. Chapter 3 deliberates some of the central viewpoints of CS research and computational thinking and how the previous viewpoints are at the same time very significant for sustainability problem space. The challenge of universality is studied and at the same time bottom-up approach is highlighted not only requirement for sustainability space but also to several other areas regarding thorough CS. In a conclusion of these the chapter 3 illustrates the linkage amongst universality, bottom-up approach and sustainability. Chapter 3 proposes guidelines for structuring research to advance a significant affect on sustainability. Chapter also discovers methodological possibilities for improving research results and affects.

Regarding CS research and sustainability the bottom-up approach is the best solution in terms of the outcome. Bottom-up approach should be conducted through developing well-structured resolutions to certain vital issues within sustainability and after that pursuing to generalize the discovered resolutions, as opposed to striving the universality from the beginning. In the end encountering the challenges of sustainability demands more than IT, uses of clever technology and CS research. This comes from the fact that most of the global sustainability issues are questions of resource consumption and standard of living. As discussed previously bottom-up approach is seen as the best way for research, which respects application-driven outcomes while at the same time assisting the iterative process that in the end leads to more universally valuable contributions.