Global Energy Network and Information System(GENIS)

A concept and design of a system of collective intelligence that could be used by the policymakers, energy experts, and the general public around the world.

The options to create and update national, global, and corporate energy strategies are so complex and rapidly changing that it is almost impossible for decisionmakers to gather and understand the information required to make and implement coherent policy. Yet the environmental and social consequences of incoherent policies are so serious that a new global system for the identification, analysis, assessment of possible consequences, and synthesis of energy options for decisionmaking is urgent.

With support from the Foundation for the Future (FFF), the Millennium Project explored the concept and design of such a system of collective intelligence that could be used by the policymakers, energy experts, and the general public around the world. Concepts such as knowledge management and the emerging field of collective intelligence for just in time knowledge have been considered. Sources such as OECD's International Energy Agency, DOE's Energy Information Administration, Encyclopedia of Earth, and IEEE's data banksi have been reviewed, as well as the use of software applications such as knowledge visualization, dashboards, decision support systems, Google, Citizendium, Wikipedia, and Second Life to understand current and foreseeable future capabilities. This review helped to generate questions for energy and information systems expert interviews and solicited feedback from attendees of the FFF energy conference and the 32 Millennium Project Nodes around the world.

The results of these interviews and searches of previous literature, Internet, and institutional reviews have been integrated into this report. Participants from the FFF energy conference along with information system experts have been added to a listserv <global-energy@mp.cim3.net> to review and discuss the initial drafts of this report. In addition to improving the quality of the report, the members of the listserv would constitute an initial Global Energy Network that could become the basis of an organization to bring the new system into being.

This report proposes to create initial prototypes and conduct tests by the Millennium Project and collaborating organizations such as SRI International, MIT's Center for Collective Intelligence, and the Cyber Node of the Millennium Project.

Excerpt from the 2008 State of the Future.