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November 3, 2010

“Green IT” is useful as an idea if it maintains IT growth

Gary Flood gets his teeth stuck in to the green debate


As followers of these rolling blogs of mine will know, I am somewhat obsessed with why Cheryl Cole doesn’t have her own 24×7 Sky channel so I could watch her all day and just sigh with adoration… oops. That’s my ‘other’ blog – apologies.

In CBR terms, I am similarly moon-struck about trying to gauge the progress of the economy and how that maps on to UK Plc’s appetite for ICT, as in here.

Now more data, this time from a much less prestigious source of course than gold-standard industry commentators and number crunchers Gartner or IDC. At last month’s IP Expo in London, 102 IT managers attending were informally polled on their attitudes to investment over the next few months – with pretty positive numbers coming back, it has to be said.

Thus no less than 86% say they will keep up spending on IT services and equipment next year, despite intermittent talk of a possible double-dip recession and of course the Draconian Comprehensive Spending Review . Three-quarters (74%) in fact went so far as to claim they are prepared to spend between 5 to 10% extra (one presumes outside planned budget – it’s not clear in the original analysis) on ‘green’ IT equipment and services.

This mini survey of UK IT leadership also included some generic data centre thoughts, with 57% of IT managers rating security as top priority when selecting a data centre, ahead of price (14%) and a good choice of network and telecoms providers (12%).

This bit of the questionnaire also throws some interesting perspective on all that chatter out there on the move to data centres cooled by Highland breezes and what have you. When asked if they would be tempted to locate their critical equipment in a remote location to save money on things like power, nearly two thirds were concerned that connectivity and security would be adversely affected if they located equipment remotely and one in four (26%) of this group saying they would never consider operating their equipment in a remote (cooler) location, such as Northern Scotland or Iceland.

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"Many of the IT managers we spoke to realise the value of investing in the latest IT advancements to ensure their organisations remain competitive during what are still quite difficult times," claimed the MD of the company that commissioned the snapshot survey, adding that, "Many of the IT managers we spoke with are being encouraged by senior management to be green either for CSR or financial reasons."

I find it encouraging that optimism and spending power are there at the grassroots, and to be frank I’ll even live with it being for allegedly Green IT reasons, something I feel is a poor concept all round.

Now all I need to complete my week is that Cheryl Cole channel. Come on, Mr Murdoch! Listen to the public your press puppets keep telling us that nasty ‘left wing’ BBC ignores.

The survey – of IT leaders from both public and private sector organisations – was conducted on behalf of City Lifeline, an independent Central London carrier neutral co-location data centre provider.

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