Call for proposals: Development of e-learning modules on the application of Life Cycle Thinking in policy and business decision-making
|Desired final outcome
|The desired final outcome is to develop two e-learning modules as follows:
|Who can apply
|How to apply
This project is implemented with the
financial support of the European Commission
Life Cycle Thinking (LCT) provides a systems perspective and helps identifying priorities and opportunities to improve production and consumption systems, while avoiding unintended trade-offs in environmental, social and economic impacts. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) underlines LCT, and is science-based, robust and normalized, thus strengthening the objectivity of the decision-making process and highlighting any implicit value choices. Life Cycle Thinking is a mostly qualitative discussion to identify stages of the life cycle and/or the potential environmental impacts of greatest significance e.g. for use in a design brief or in an introductory discussion of policy measures. The greatest benefit is that it helps focus consideration of the full life cycle of the product or system; data are typically qualitative (statements) or very general and available-by-heart quantitative data (Christiansen et al. 1997): https://www.lifecycleinitiative.org/resources/life-cycle-terminology-2/#l.
While governments and the private sector are increasingly pressured to achieve more sustainable consumption and production patterns, the interlinkages between different pathways and between impact dimensions are highly complex and as such difficult to be taken into account in decision-making processes.
There is a general lack of understanding on how LCT supports decision-making for Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) and Circular Economies. In addition, the multitude of available tools for LCT (so called life cycle approaches) tend to overwhelm decision makers in governments and businesses. The lack of capacity and know-how about the benefits and possibilities of applying life cycle approaches points to an increasing need for expertise and technical support to private and public decision-makers.
In order to overcome the challenges described above, capacity building tools will be developed in order to support governmental and business decision-makers by increasing knowledge and know-how about the benefits and possibilities of life cycle approaches for their decision-making processes.
The availability of LCT training opportunities through e-learning modules will result in increased understanding of LCT and ultimately enable better decision-making for Sustainable Consumption and Production and Circular Economy.
As part of its key activity area devoted to capacity building, the Life Cycle Initiative is producing several e-learning modules that address life cycle thinking and approaches from different perspectives and in various levels of depth. So far, an Introduction to Life Cycle Thinking is already available and accessible here: https://www.lifecycleinitiative.org/resources-2/e-learning-modules/.
The objective of this project is to develop two e-learning modules as follows:
- The application of Life Cycle Thinking in policy decision-making
- The application of Life Cycle Thinking in business decision-making
The module should help participants obtain broad knowledge on life cycle approaches and develop an understanding of why and how to assess the impacts for any given decision, including which life cycle tools are to be used for either decision-making either a policy or business context. The benefits of applying such tools should be clear by the end of the learning experience.
Mapping of relevant materials and information sources based on which the modules will be developed, including background information to be provided through the modules. The content should draw on training materials already used by the Life Cycle Initiative and be completed by additional material as relevant. A special focus will be given to the presentation of success stories for the concrete application of life cycle approaches in policies and businesses (see e.g. https://www.lifecycleinitiative.org/resources/lcacases/).
Script development and review: A detailed content script will be developed for both modules and be reviewed by the Life Cycle Initiative ad hoc Review Committee. The modules will further include interactive exercises and review sections, and include after-module feedback mechanisms in order to check how participants have incorporated the learning from the modules in their decision-making. The technical platform and format of each module will also be defined at this stage.
Voice-over script and module development.
Road-testing: The Life Cycle Initiative community will be asked to test the module and provide comments; the modules will also go through quality assurance review through the Life Cycle Initiative ad hoc Review Committee.
Revision of the modules based on feedback received.
Roll-out and dissemination: Relevant stakeholder groups and access points will be identified. A communication and dissemination strategy will be developed. The e-learning modules will be disseminated with supporting communication material, if necessary. In total, a target of 2,000 users completing each one of the e-learning modules within the first four months is envisioned.
- Suggestions for technical as well as design related aspect are sought through this call for proposal.
- The course materials will be hosted within the thinkific.com platform and shall therefore be created to work within this platform’s technical characteristics. The design should take into account the existing e-learning course to ensure a ‘family look’ across all course materials. Further details will be defined in coordination with the UN Environment project team upon selection.
- Each module should not exceed the duration of 1 hour (based on average usage time).
- Each module will be developed in English and Spanish language. Additional languages are welcome.
Qualification of the project proposal
Project proposals are sought which meet the following criteria:
- Proposals with clear objectives and a feasible implementation plan within the budget and time available.
- Proposals with a strong technical and design focus.
- Proposals with a practical plan to develop, road-test and disseminate the modules among relevant stakeholders.
- Proposals that demonstrate a sound understanding of the benefits and possibilities of applying life cycle approaches in governmental and business decision-making.
- Proposals that have organizational co-financing and additional support.
- Track record of the applicant, specifically including experience in developing e-learning modules.
Who can apply?
Applications are sought from Academia (Research Institutes, Universities), Non-Government Organisations (NGOs), Not-for-Profit Organisations (NPOs). The applying institution shall have a good track record of:
- Possessing a sound understanding of topics related to sustainable consumption and production topics and Life Cycle Thinking and Approaches.
- Proven expertise and experience in the development and delivery of e-learning modules for the purpose of capacity-building.
- Technical and human resources capacity to carry out the project.
- Fluency in written English.
- A consortium of partner organizations is acceptable. In that case, a main applying organization should be identified. The main applying organization will be the contracting partner of UN Environment and should therefore fulfil the criteria of being a Not for Profit organization.
How to apply?
Applicants should submit an application, using the attached template, to the project coordinators listed in the application template. Please also email us for any inquiries.