Discussion Forum on Life Cycle Assessment

Mission and Organisation 

LCA practitioners working in industry, consulting companies and administration and LCA scientists. Each LCA forum is dedicated to a specific topic of immediate interest related to

  • experiences and challenges with LCA application in industry and administration
  • scientific questions in life cycle inventory and life cycle impact assessment metholodogy development
  • dissemination of new scientific findings and results of relevant LCA studies

The LCA Discussion Forum is a platform for the exchange between Internationally reknown speakers are invited according to the topic to present their work. Each forum offers an "open floor" session for short presentations. The LCA forum is dedicated to people interested in the field of LCA, working in Switzerland and abroad. Its content is defined by an advisory board.

New Downloads

DF 72:  Normalization and weighting. The forgotten theme in LCA.  (Presentations and video recordings available)

DF 75:  Jubilee DF 75 on "Life Cycle Thinking = Lower Footprint?"  (flyer with date & call for abstracts)

DF 71:  Environmental Benchmarks for buildings: Needs, challenges and solutions  (Presentations and video recordings available)

DF series 2019:  Flyer for DF in 2019

DF 70:  Social LCA – Challenges and solutions in application and implementation  (Presentations and video recordings available)

DF 69:  Regionalization in LCA: Current status in concepts, software and databases  (Presentations and video recordings available)

Current Meeting

DF 72 — Normalization and weighting. The forgotten theme in LCA. 

Monday, 9 September, 2019, ETH Zürich, Alumni (GEP) Pavillon 

We cordially invite you to the 72nd Discussion Forum on Life Cycle Assessment.
The official language of this event is English. 

To draw the right conclusions based on environmental indicators can be a challenging task due to the consideration of a broad variety of environmental impacts that show diverging results. Many LCA practitioners seek help in interpreting diverging results in different impact categories by applying single score LCIA methods. But the ISO standards do not support weighting for publishing comparative LCA. Nevertheless, the increasing need for unequivocal results lead to the development of single score impact assessment method.

This forum aims to provide a fertile ground for discussion between LCA researchers, practitioners and other people interested in the interpretation and development of normalization and weighting methods.


Future Meetings

Call for short presentations:

You work on a topic relevant to one of the announced Discussion Fora and wish to present your findings?

"Open floor" sessions for short presentations will be available in each forum. Please contact the LCA Discussion Forum secretariat – the sooner the better. 
For more information and to receive news on the LCA Discussion Forum, please contact: lcaforum (at) ethz.ch 

DF 73 — Digital transformation: LCA of digital services, multifunctional devices and cloud data centres.

Thursday, November 21, 2019, ZHAW Wädenswil (not ETH Zürich)

(The official language of this event is English.)

Increasing digitalisation not only makes our daily life easier but also causes changes in the environmental impact of our activities. The substitution of material-based services with digital services – for example films or music – alters the environmental impact of our everyday activities and shifts visible material use to less visible digital services. 

A holistic LCA of the transformation from material to digital services requires the assessment of information and communication technology (ICT) and takes into account new business models as well as emerging technologies. Modelling of digital services and multifunctional devices are complex and the choice of assumptions has a crucial impact on the final assessment. 

A discussion of all these topics in the LCA-community allows the evaluation of different approaches for the assessment of digital transformation.

This DF will therefore cover the LCA of transformation to a digital society with its wide range of devices and technologies as well as summation effects caused by new services enabled by modern ICT.

DF 75 — Life Cycle Thinking = Lower Footprint?

Monday & Tuesday, September 14 & 15, 2020 (2 day jubilee forum), Zürich

If we compare the necessary large transformations (e.g. in GHG reductions, or land use patterns) with common LCAs, the question arises: Did LCA hitherto support big decisions and changes? Or are we using LCA mostly for minuscule optimizations? We're eagerly awaiting your abstracts for presentations and posters which answer one (or many) of these questions: 
   • How much does (did) LCA really help in reducing pressure on the environment? 
   • Which important decisions were based on LC thinking and analysis?
   • How can LCA become more effective for big issues?

Submissions can be either scientific or 'practical' (e.g. from industrial practitioners without scientific endeavour). Key is to discuss the topics.  

We look forward to your abstracts, to be submitted until January, 10th, 2020, to: (this link follows soon).  

Flyer 2019

The flyer 2019 for download (as of 181122):


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