Measuring ECO-innovation: ecological and economic performance and DeRIVEd indicators (ECODRIVE)

Funded by: European Commission FP6

Duration:

January 2007 to December 2007

Collaborators:

Department of Industrial Ecology of the Institute of Environmental Sciences (CML) at Leiden University; the Centre for Sustainability Management (CSM) at the University of Lüneburg

PSI researchers:


Ben Shaw

Background, summary and aims

The Gothenburg and Lisbon goals require high productivity growth with absolute decoupling of environmental impacts at a macro level, realised through the process of eco-innovation at a micro and meso level. Eco-innovation indicators are required to measure progress, both economic performance, such as in terms of cost reduction and enhanced functionality, and the environmental performance, such as reductions in emissions and resource depletion and other environmental improvements.

Actual improvement take place at a micro level, involving technologies and their upstream systems (cradle-to-gate); goods and services as product systems; and through innovative behaviours, both by producers and consumers. As most incentives and improvements work through firms and sectors, performance measurement at meso-level is essential as well.

This project distinguishes three types of eco-innovation indicators. First is the actual economic and environmental performance. Second are indirect proxy indicators of expected actual performance. Third are the indirect indicators capturing the factors conducive to eco-innovation, as drivers, ranging from having an eco-innovation manager to the internalisation of externalities in prices.

The project will:

  • Further detail the conceptual basis and typology of eco-innovation
  • Set out the methodology for eco-innovation indicators selection
  • Structure the indirect indicators field with a focus on the most powerful predictive factors
  • Indicate most relevant drivers for application in policy and management
  • Give an exemplary application of the indicators of all types
  • Indicate efforts to improve the data availability for eco-innovation indicators
  • Specify research for improving insight into positive and negative factors on eco-innovation.

A workshop with public and private sector stakeholders will be held to help develop and validate the approach.

This project is led by the Department of Industrial Ecology of the Institute of Environmental Sciences (CML) at Leiden University and the Centre for Sustainability Management (CSM) at the University of Lüneburg is also a project partner.

Further details of the project can be found on the ECODRIVE wiki.