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Towards Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment

Author

Listed:
  • Matthias Finkbeiner

    () (Department of Environmental Technology, Technische Universität Berlin, Office Z1, Strasse des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin, Germany)

  • Erwin M. Schau

    (Department of Environmental Technology, Technische Universität Berlin, Office Z1, Strasse des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin, Germany)

  • Annekatrin Lehmann

    (Department of Environmental Technology, Technische Universität Berlin, Office Z1, Strasse des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin, Germany)

  • Marzia Traverso

    (Department of Environmental Technology, Technische Universität Berlin, Office Z1, Strasse des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin, Germany)

Abstract

Sustainability is nowadays accepted by all stakeholders as a guiding principle for both public policy making and corporate strategies. However, the biggest challenge for most organizations remains in the real and substantial implementation of the sustainability concept. The core of the implementation challenge is the question, how sustainability performance can be measured, especially for products and processes. This paper explores the current status of Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment (LCSA) for products and processes. For the environmental dimension well established tools like Life Cycle Assessment are available. For the economic and social dimension, there is still need for consistent and robust indicators and methods. In addition to measuring the individual sustainability dimensions, another challenge is a comprehensive, yet understandable presentation of the results. The “Life Cycle Sustainability Dashboard” and the “Life Cycle Sustainability Triangle” are presented as examples for communication tools for both experts and non expert stakeholders.

Suggested Citation

  • Matthias Finkbeiner & Erwin M. Schau & Annekatrin Lehmann & Marzia Traverso, 2010. "Towards Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 2(10), pages 1-14, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:2:y:2010:i:10:p:3309-3322:d:9966
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Markus Berger & Matthias Finkbeiner, 2010. "Water Footprinting: How to Address Water Use in Life Cycle Assessment?," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 2(4), pages 1-26, April.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    life cycle sustainability assessment; life cycle assessment; life cycle costing; social LCA;

    JEL classification:

    • Q - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics
    • Q0 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - General
    • Q2 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q3 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q5 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products

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