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Special Issue "Innovation by Linking through Life Cycle Thinking: Practices and Challenges from EcoBalance"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 August 2019

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Jun Nakatani

Department of Urban Engineering, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8656, Japan
Website | E-Mail
Interests: life-cycle assessment; life-cycle impact assessment; material flow analysis; supply chain risk management; plastic recycling; consumer preference assessment; conjoint analysis
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Matthias Finkbeiner

Department of Environmental Technology, Technische Universität Berlin, 10623 Berlin, Germany
Website 1 | Website 2 | E-Mail
Phone: +49.(0)30.314-24341
Interests: water footprint; life cycle assessment; resource efficiency and availability; life cycle sustainability assessment
Guest Editor
Prof. Shabbir H. Gheewala

The Joint Graduate School of Energy and Environment, King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi Environment, 126 Pracha Uthit Road, Bangmod, Tungkru 10140 Bangkok, Thailand
Website | E-Mail
Interests: life-cycle assessment; carbon footprint; water footprint; life-cycle sustainability assessment; environmental labeling
Guest Editor
Dr. Sonia Valdivia

1. Faculty of Sustainability, University of Lueneburg, Scharnhorststraße 1, 21335 Lüneburg, Germany
2. World Resources Forum, Lerchenfeldstr. 5. 9014, St. Gallen, Switzerland
Website | E-Mail
Interests: life-cycle sustainability assessment, life-cycle management, circular economy, sustainable consumption and production
Guest Editor
Dr. Tao Wang

Circular Economy Research Institute, Tongji University
Interests: material flow analysis; waste management; circular economy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to invite you to submit articles for a Special Issue on “Innovation by Linking through Life Cycle Thinking: Practices and Challenges from EcoBalance” by August 31, 2019.

Recently, issues relevant to sustainability have become diversified, while individual study areas have become highly specialized. The focus of this Special Issue covers discussions on innovation by linking ideas from different research fields through life cycle thinking towards unraveling sustainability issues which are highly intertwined, which include but are not limited to:

  • Supply chain risks and resource efficiency
  • Green technologies and material criticality
  • Hotspot analysis and global supply chains
  • Circular economy and sustainable design
  • Circular economy and behavioral science
  • Local sustainability and renewable energy
  • Food–energy–water nexus
  • Policy design and sustainability analysis

We would like to invite you to share a wide range of studies, experiences and knowledge that helps to promote innovation towards unraveling sustainability issues (not limited only to environmental aspects but also covering social and economic aspects). In recognition of the fact that research fields relevant to sustainability are diverse, contributions from various sectors are welcome to highlight advantages by linking ideas from different research fields through life cycle thinking.

This issue welcomes important studies in the abovementioned context from all researchers and practitioners. Special encouragement goes to the papers that extend the presentations from EcoBalance 2018, the 13th Biennial International Conference on EcoBalance. The EcoBalance conference has been offering precious opportunities for the researchers and practitioners who examine how life cycle thinking can actually make practical steps forward towards sustainability. Its uniqueness has always lied on the presence of various industrial sectors and participants from the non-OECD countries, especially from Asia. Recognizing that the problems currently being encountered in developed regions are the ones that will be faced by the developing regions, this Special Issue hopes to respond to the practices and needs both in developed and developing regions worldwide.

Prof. Matthias Finkbeiner
Dr. Jun Nakatani
Prof. Shabbir H. Gheewala
Dr. Sonia Valdivia
Dr. Tao Wang
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • life cycle assessment/management
  • environmental footprint
  • supply chain management
  • resource resilience/efficiency
  • circular economy
  • Sustainable Development Goals
  • consumption and production

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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