WE.3.D || Life Cycle Management in Education and Culture

Koch, Christian; Fogh Friedrich, Mathilde; Kjøniksen, Anna-Lena; Tellnes, Lars G. F.

Lifecycle assessment (LCA) is becoming prescribed in more and more contexts, creating a push toward educating and training broader groups of industry professionals and other stakeholders to understand and carry out LCA. As LCA become increasingly widely used, the question raises whether its early day basis in expert evaluation is feasible in the future. The much broader need for applying LCA will at least put pressure on the existing experts, such as environmental consultants. One example of the dilemma relates to simplification of LCA. While simplication is widespread, it is not broadly accepted that anyone can simplify LCA and still generate trustworthy result. Hence the present adoption of LCA involves a prevailing implicit inclination towards expert evaluation. Which again implies a democratic deficit of some sort. The presentation sets out to evaluate this trend. Which aspects would create democratisation of LCA and which would tend to preserve expert domination. As theoretical framework is pulled together, consisting element of LCA and sociology of codetermination. LCA concepts are used to understand state of the art of LCA approaches and praxises. Sociology of codetermination is helpful in understanding the degree of influence various stakeholder have on LCA calculation The presentation give illustrative case studies of carrying out LCA and analysis which element leans towards more democratic approaches and which not. The cases is selected from expert consultancies experiences making LCA analysis in various companies in Norway. This material is revisited with a codetermination lens and examples of more or less egalitarian LCA evaluation processes are analysed. Case specific simplication clearly occur in the case studies, but the validity of these remain unclear and incompletely investigated. Rather LCA credibility is substituted with expert credibility and trustworthiness. A phenomena that tend to hinder a democratization of LCA.