Illustration of sLCA thinking
Illustration of sLCA thinking

RESPONSA - a REgional SPecific cONtextualised Social life cycle Assessment


Alberto Bezama

RESPONSA is an social Life Cycle Assessment approach that evaluates through social indicators, socio-economic effects of products on stakeholders along the life cycle.

The Social Life Cycle Assessmnet (sLCA) approach should add a socio-economic dimension to the conventional LCA methods. Within the Leading Edge Cluster Bioeconomy current sLCA approaches are further developed for an application in wood-based bioeconomy regions. The approach analysis and assesses context-specific effects of products on sakeholders (e.g. workers and local communities) along the value chain located in the region.

RESPONSA provides social sustainability indicators, to conduct as a first step inventories of indicator values from organisations associated to the life cycle of a product under assessment. In order to determine the degree of the social performance indicated by the organisation’s indicator values so called performance reference points are applied. They indicate thresholds or benchmarks on a regional/national sector specific level. For a complete assessment of the social performance of a product the characterised inventories are allocated to the organisation’s output and scaled to a functional unit. By evaluating the social performance we can identify social hotspots and opportunities for single organisations, as well as along the value chain of products.


Bezama, A., Hildebrandt, J., Thrän, D., (2021):

Integrating regionalized socio-economic considerations onto life cycle assessment for evaluating bioeconomy value chains: A case study on hybrid wood-concrete ceiling elements
Sustainability 13 (8), art. 422

Jarosch, L., Zeug, W., Bezama, A., Finkbeiner, M., Thrän, D., (2020):
A regional socio-economic life cycle assessment of a bioeconomy value chain
Sustainability 12 (3), art. 1259

Siebert, A., Bezama, A., O'Keeffe, S., Thrän, D., (2018):
Social life cycle assessment: in pursuit of a framework for assessing wood-based products from bioeconomy regions in Germany
Int. J. Life Cycle Assess. 23 (3), 651 - 662

Siebert, A., Bezama, A., O'Keeffe, S., Thrän, D., (2018):
Social life cycle assessment indices and indicators to monitor the social implications of wood-based products
J. Clean Prod. 172 , 4074 - 4084

Siebert, A., O'Keeffe, S., Bezama, A., Zeug, W., Thrän, D., (2018):
How not to compare apples and oranges: Generate context-specific performance reference points for a social life cycle assessment model
J. Clean Prod. 198 , 587 - 600

Hildebrandt, J., Budzinski, M., Siebert, A., Bezama, A., Thrän, D. (2015): "Further developments of Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment (LCSA) frameworks in the context of the bioeconomy." In: Bruckner, T., Gawel, E., Holländer, R., Thrän, D., Weinsziehr, T., Verhoog, M. (Hrsg.) Studien zu Infrastruktur und Ressourcenmanagement, Band 5. Zehn Jahre transdisziplinäre Nachhaltigkeitsforschung an der Universität Leipzig - Festschrift anlässlich des zehnjährigen Bestehens des Instituts für Infrastruktur und Ressourcenmanagement (IIRM), S. 125-130, Logos Verlag Berlin, ISBN 978-3-8325-4158-3

Siebert, A. and Bezama, A. (2014): "An Analytical Framework for a Regional sLCA Goal System: Application in a Wood-Based Bioeconomy Region in Germany". In: DepoTech 2014 - Abfallwirtschaft, Abfallverwertung und Recycling, Deponietechnik und Altlasten. p.657-660. Lehrstuhl für Abfallverwertungstechnik und Abfallwirtschaft (AVAW). Leoben, Austria.

Siebert, A. and Bezama, A. (2014): "Regional Social Life Cycle Assessment of wood-based products." In: Macombe, Loeillet (2014) Social LCA in progress 4th SocSem. Montpellier, France.

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