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Thought for the day…

by Steve Prentice  |  January 15, 2009  |  Comments Off on Thought for the day…

It has been an interesting day. In fact, as my colleague Nick Jones commented in his blog, it has been an interesting week, and it is unlikely to get any less interesting as we move through the year. Let’s face it, we are still only half way through January!

Nick is right, scanning the news sites there are numerous conundrums and apparent contradictions. Leaving aside the inevitable speculation about Steve Jobs’ health (he has now been elevated to the status of “National Treasure” by Maggie Shiels, the BBC’s technology reporter based in Silicon Valley) there is a big row brewing over the decision to build a third runway at London’s¬†Heathrow airport. Without wishing to get into the politics of the decision, it does seem somewhat at odds with the heavy and increasing emphasis we see on environmental issues – one of the recurrent themes of CES for example.¬†

Over the past couple of days (and throughout the night (at least the night in my part of the world!)) we have been running a series of online research meetings here at Gartner, something that in previous years we have done face to face at some central location. Like many companies we are examining the real need for travel and investigating the potential of technology to substitute for travel. Whilst face to face meetings will not go away, it seems clear that the current economic conditions are going to cause organisations and individuals to change their behaviour. The end result is likely to be a reduction, at least for a period of time, in international travel for business purposes, which kind of undermines the decision to build a new runway!

It would be interesting to hear from anyone the extent to which their travel is being impacted by the current conditions and what steps they are taking, and technologies they might now be considering, to replace the need. I look forward to some feedback!

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Category: behaviour  

Tags: green  travel  virtual-meetings  

Stephen Prentice
VP & Gartner Fellow
13 years at Gartner
35 years IT industry

Stephen Prentice is a VP and Gartner Fellow working in the Executive Leadership and Innovation Group (part of CIO Research). He takes a specific interest in emerging trends and the long-term future of technology - looking at the intersection of technology, business and society. Current research interests include... Read Full Bio

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