Soutenance HDR Ralph K. Rosenbaum : Increasing precision and applicability of life cycle impact assessment in the context of comparative environmental sustainability studies , 26 mai




Ralph Rosenbaum soutiendra son Habilitation à Diriger des Recherches

le mardi 26 mai 2015 à 14h00

 à Montpellier SupAgro, bâtiment 9 (cœur d’école), amphithéâtre 206 (Montpellier, France)


Devant le jury composé de :

Jeanne Garric, Directeur de Recherche, Irstea Villeurbanne, Rapporteur

Benoît Gabrielle, Professeur, AgroParisTech, Rapporteur

Guido Sonnemann, Professeur, Université de Bordeaux, Rapporteur

Isabelle Blanc, Professeur, MinesParisTech, Examinateur

Assumpció Antón Vallejo, Professeur Associée, Chercheur IRTA Cabrils (Espagne), Examinateur


Increasing precision and applicability of life cycle impact assessment in the context of comparative environmental sustainability studies 

Abstract :

As little as 10 to 15 years ago, Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) was still widely perceived as too complex, too complicated, too data intensive, and basically impossible to do within a reasonable time frame, or in short, too expensive. The professor of my first university course on LCA almost 20 years ago had this to say about Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA, by now an obligatory element of LCA studies): “It’s basically black magic, which only a few young people in the field pretend to be capable of, while frankly they don’t know what they’re doing”. Thanks to a lively, enthusiastic, and fast growing community of researchers, practitioners, decision-makers, and governmental experts pushing LCA ahead on all levels of society, the situation has fundamentally changed. Today, LCA is a globally recognised quantitative sustainability assessment methodology (in fact the only quantitative approach so far), which steadily finds its way into environmental law, supply-chain communication among businesses, public decision-making and product policies, consumer product labelling and marketing, etc. Over the years two main axes have crystallised in my own work: 1) research towards methodological evolution of LCA via more precise and robust approaches, and 2) research and development towards operationalization, global harmonisation, and improved accessibility of LCA. A synthesis of these activities and their results will be presented before focusing on future projects for the coming years. These perspectives include improved consideration of environmental issues (e.g. biodiversity) related to water use and land use, ecotoxicity and human toxicity exposure and impacts, as well as the ongoing process of global harmonisation and establishing recommendations for LCIA methodology within the frame of the UNEP-SETAC Life Cycle Initiative.

[ Ralph K. Rosenbaum Research Gate ]