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Life cycle inventory dataset review criteria—a new proposal
GreenDelta GmbH, Germany.
EuGeos Ltd., UK.
RISE - Research Institutes of Sweden, Materials and Production, IVF.
Ecoinnovazione srl, Italy.
2019 (English)In: The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, ISSN 0948-3349, E-ISSN 1614-7502Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Purpose: A review of LCA process datasets is an important element of quality assurance for databases and for other systems to provide LCA datasets. Somewhat surprisingly, a broadly accepted and applicable set of criteria for a review of LCA process datasets was lacking so far. Different LCA databases and frameworks are proposing and using different criteria for reviewing datasets. To close this gap, a set of criteria for reviewing LCA dataset has been developed within the Life Cycle Initiative. Methods: Previous contributions to LCA dataset review have been analysed for a start, from ISO and various LCA databases. To avoid somewhat arbitrary review criteria, four basic rules are proposed which are to be fulfilled by any dataset. Further, concepts for assessing representativeness and relevance are introduced into the criteria set from established practices in statistics and materiality. To better structure the criteria and to ease their application, they are grouped into clusters. A first version of the developed review criteria was presented in two workshops with database providers and users on different levels of experience, and draft versions of the criteria were shared within the initiative. The current version of the criteria reflects feedback received from various stakeholders and has been applied and tested in a review for newly developed datasets in Brazil, Malaysia and Thailand. Results and discussion: Overall, 14 criteria are proposed, which are organised in clusters. The clusters are goal, model, value, relevance and procedure. For several criteria, a more science-based definition and evaluation is proposed in comparison to ‘traditional’ LCA. While most of the criteria depend on the goal and scope of dataset development, a core set of criteria are seen as essential and independent from specific LCA modelling. For all the criteria, value scales are developed, typically using an ordinal scale, following the pedigree approach. Conclusions: Review criteria for LCI datasets are now defined based on a stringent approach. They aim to be globally acceptable, considering also database interoperability and database management aspects, as well as feedback received from various stakeholders, and thus close an important gap in LCA dataset quality assurance. The criteria take many elements of already existing criteria but are the first to fully reflect the implications of the ISO data quality definition, and add new concepts for representativeness and relevance with the idea to better reflect scientific practice outside of the LCA domain. A first application in a review showed to be feasible, with a level of effort similar to applying other review criteria. Aspects not addressed yet are the review procedure and the mutual recognition of dataset reviews, and their application for a very high number of datasets

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer , 2019.
Keywords [en]
Critical review, Data quality, Datasets, Quality assurance, Representativeness, article, Brazil, data interoperability, life cycle, Malaysia, pedigree, quality control, Thailand
National Category
Natural Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:ri:diva-42369DOI: 10.1007/s11367-019-01712-9Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85076095295OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ri-42369DiVA, id: diva2:1380977
Available from: 2019-12-19 Created: 2019-12-19 Last updated: 2019-12-19Bibliographically approved

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