Information Systems Frontiers

, Volume 15, Issue 5, pp 831–847 | Cite as

Green information technology strategic justification and evaluation

  • Chunguang Bai
  • Joseph Sarkis


Green and sustainable information technology (GSIT) can be an important and strategic decision for many organizations. Strategic GSIT decisions can influence a variety of internal and external organizational stakeholders. GSIT justification and evaluation is critical to organizations, especially those seeking the ecological modernization ‘win-win’ of introducing green technologies into organizations. The literature has seen very few tools and approaches to aid in the explicit justification of strategic GSIT. Although numerous models exist for regular IT, there are certain characteristics including a greater number of factors, especially intangible and socially focused factors, requiring greater investigation of tools for the evaluation and justification process. The identification of appropriate metrics and categorizations to use in advanced strategic appraisal techniques for GSIT is in itself a non-trivial exercise. Thus, in this paper issues facing the strategic justification of GSIT set the stage for introduction of a novel, flexible and comprehensive evaluation approach utilizing a grey systems, fuzzy, and TOPSIS multiple criteria foundation. An illustrative application for evaluating and selecting alternative green data center designs sets the stage for an illustrative example and sensitivity analysis. The results are evaluated including discussion of practical and research implications. Directions for future research are also identified.


Sustainability Strategic justification Multiple criteria decision making Information technology TOPSIS Ecological modernization 



This work is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China Project (71102090),(71002094); Liaoning Social Science Planning Foundation of China (L11DGL019); Liaoning Education Department Foundation of China (W2011125);


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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Management Science and EngineeringDongbei University of Finance & EconomicsDalianPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Graduate School of ManagementClark UniversityWorcesterUSA

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