The value of 10 minutes

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The February results of the FierceSmartGrid/Zpryme Smart Grid Index tell us that, overall, the industry has a clearer picture of the economic and political environment than just a few months ago. Overall smart grid sentiment is positive likely driven by broader economic trends and political certainty in developed nations such as the U.S. and Japan -- even though the EU still has some more work to do in order to quell economic fears.

Index respondents believe that more resources are needed to engage and educate utility customers in the United States with vendors and utilities alike reporting that North American IOUs must take the lead in developing progressive customer engagement strategies to avoid customer backlash.

In March, the industry will be watching proposals from the U.S. regarding climate change, infrastructure investments, and the appointment of the next U.S. Department of Energy Secretary.

On the vendor side of things, acquisitions are expected to pick up over the next few months as major players look to broaden their smart grid offerings and create a competitive advantage in a market that is becoming increasingly global in nature.

The results of the FierceSmartGrid/Zpryme Smart Grid Index continue to provide us with deeper and divergent insight into the industry.

We know you are busy, and sometimes even five to 10 minutes can be difficult to carve out. But I can't even begin to tell you how much of a difference those minutes have made to us and how valuable your insight is.

If you've gotten into the groove of participating in the survey and have completed it over the last few several months -- thank you! If you have done one or two surveys, please make that pattern a habit. If you've never taken the survey, consider doing so. Better yet, just do it! Your input means so much to your industry. -- Barb