Winding down Phase 3 Flagships

The Life Cycle Initiative is now winding down the Flagship Activities undertaken during its third five-year phase (2012-2017). A new phase is set to begin with a renewed mandate, new governance structure and three new core programme areas.

The information and links below provide background and archive information on the Phase 3 Flagship Projects.

Flagship Activities

The work programme, derived through an intensive strategy development process, includes three programme areas and a number of flagship and non-flagship projects. The programme areas are the following:

Data, methods and product sustainability information

One can already find several good examples of enterprises that have seen the potential benefits of life cycle thinking and approaches, and are applying them to meet the expectations of their customers and consumers, and to meet their internal sustainability objectives. However, enhanced methodologies, life cycle based approaches and accessible data are demanded by organizations worldwide to support the implementation of life cycle thinking.


One of the Life Cycle Initiative’s key Phase III objectives is keyed toward mainstreaming the use of life cycle approaches. This implies the accessibility of cost-effective, robust methodologies and tools based on reliable data.

Capability Development & implementation

More capability development will be needed to fully operationalize and eventually mainstream LCA in product development, marketing and, decision-making. For example, more LCAs must be carried out in order for lessons to be learned through experiences, to overcome current limitations, to expand the available data, and improve techniques and methodology. The Life Cycle Initiative is poised to play an important role in making this happen through its Phase III by transfering the scientific knowledge (which is mainly discussed in the academic field) to a broader society.

Phase 3 Vision

A world where life cycle approaches are mainstreamed.

Phase 3 Mission

Enable the global use of credible life cycle knowledge for more sustainable societies.

Phase 3 Objectives

The overarching objective of the Life Cycle Initiative is to: Facilitate the generation and uptake of science-based life cycle approaches and information for products by business, government and civil society practice worldwide as a basis for sustainable consumption and production. The specific objectives of the Life Cycle Initiative are to:

  • Enhance the global consensus and relevance of existing and emerging life cycle methodologies and data management;
  • Expand capability worldwide to apply and to improve life cycle approaches; making them operational for organisations;
  • Communicate current life cycle knowledge and be the global voice of the Life Cycle community to influence and partner with stakeholders.

Communication & stakeholder outreach

Given the critical importance of a worldwide dissemination and appropriated communication of life cycle approaches and methods, the Life Cycle Initiative has identified the need to improve its global communication channels. The Life Cycle Initiative’s main activities in Phase III will focus on current life cycle knowledge and be the global voice of the Life Cycle community to influence and partner with stakeholders. It seek to engage the life cycle communities, experts and people who have influence on Life Cycle Assessment topics, in a long-term dialogue; increase the public awareness on LCA and LCM issues; and create an open discussion environment between experts and the general public.

Additional Work Streams

Life Cycle Managment – Capability Maturity Model (LCM-CMM)

The aim of the LCM-CMM is to focus on capability development and implementation to fully operationalize and mainstream Life Cycle Assessment in product development, marketing, and strategic decision-making in business. From a practical point of view, this approach aims at continuously raising the organisational maturity of an entity and its suppliers in order to make value chains more sustainable. To make that happen, the capability framework divides sustainability concepts into smaller elements, with specific objectives tailored to the current state of knowledge and practice of the organization.

This work stream has resulted in a set of training materials and case studies.