Numerical approaches towards life cycle interpretation five examples

R. Heijungs*, R. Kleijn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The ISO-standard for LCA distinguishes four phases, of which the last one, the interpretation, is the least elaborated. It can be regarded as containing procedural steps (like a completeness check) as well as numerical steps (like a sensitivity check). This paper provides five examples of techniques that can be used for the numerical steps. These are the contribution analysis, the perturbation analysis, the uncertainty analysis, the comparative analysis, and the discernibility analysis. All five techniques are described at a non technical level with respect to basic concept, possibilities, tabular and graphical representation, restriction and warnings, and all are illustrated with a simple example.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-148
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Life Cycle Assessment
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Comparative analysis
  • Contribution analysis
  • Discernibility analysis
  • Life cycle interpretation
  • Perturbation analysis
  • Sensitivity analysis
  • Statistical techniques
  • Uncertainty analysis


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