Experiences from data management within the industry driven cooperation CPM
Conference contribution, 2005
The Swedish national competence center CPM (Center for environmental assessment of Product and Material systems) has since the start in 1996 been a meeting place where industry and academy cooperate in the development and implementation of tools and methods for sustainable development. Evaluations of the center have shown that the results are feasible and of highest international standard.
The usage of environmental assessment results for decisions with significant economic consequences, require transparent well documented data where the assessment results can be verified. The knowledge on what data actually represents furthermore facilitates reuse of information. The fact that the data inventory always is a very costly part when performing environmental assessments call for an approach to regard acquired data as a long term investment. Despite data should be of recent date. Many of the companies within the center such as ABB, Akzo Nobel and SCA have for a long time been working actively with these data quality issues. They are now using assessment results for decision-making with confidence, as the transparency makes it possible to verify and interpret the information behind the result. The documentation of the data makes it also possible to use the information in different contexts than it originally was collected for.
Within the center there have also been examples of companies that prioritized a quick start up of their environmental work. These companies found that the results from assessments did not meet the requirements on data for using it for sharp decisions, and they were furthermore not able to reuse earlier work on introduction of new staff. These companies have now changed their information management.
Through the years the members of CPM have gained a lot of knowledge on cost-efficient data management which now is an important information source for other companies in the world.