Audiences and Lessons Learned

In order to effectively communicate with the different target audiences identified in Table 20.1, the life cycle community needs to agree on key messages and deliver them with a global voice, albeit adapted to local conditions. It should be noted in this context that a communication effort should focus first and foremost on decision makers in business and government to drive change. In a second step, together with successful stakeholders in the field of consumer information, the focus will need to be extended to target also the general public.

In this context, bringing together the life cycle community as a clear stakeholder is critical to establishing a global voice, but the collaboration with other stakeholders is equally important in developing communication tools and capability that resonate with people outside of the LC community.

It is also important to consider that communication is a two way street. Whilst the life cycle community needs to educate decision makers and the general public about the advantages and benefits of taking a life cycle perspective, communication also needs to work in the other direction. In this context it is crucial that the community is visible, approachable and receptive for feedback from different voices in society.

In the end it will be important to acknowledge that if societal change is the objective, it is of utmost importance to interact closely with society. Here it will be important to proactively identify opportunities to discuss sustainability challenges and support other relevant communities and actors.

Table 20.1 Target groups and desired outcomes

Target group

Who are they?

Desired outcomes

Decision makers in business and public sector can be reached through

• Cross cutting business federations (e.g. chambers of commerce, WGBC)

• Sector based business federations

• NGOs

• Education centers (universities and schools) (future decision makers)

• Specialist media

• Funding agencies

• Standard and certification bodies

Influential professionals (middle management) and final decision makers in various departments: (communication, sustainability, finance, product development, procurement, economic development, etc.) Business

• Large businesses

• SMEs Public sector

• Federal/national level government

• Local level government

• Public departments

• Develop and implement LC approaches in their business or policy making (e.g. policy making, green procurement, product development)

• Support national LCI database development and management following global guidance

• Provide case studies of LC implementation

• Collaborate with the LC community to ensure their developments are well aligned with needs

• Encourage other businesses and governments to engage

General public

Can be reached through

• NGOs

• Governmental programs

• Education centers (universities and schools)

• General media (including social)

The general public as individuals to influence their behavior as consumers, business stakeholders and active members of civil society

• Understand the concept of taking a life cycle perspective and its advantages

• Create a market for sustainable consumer products

• Build demand for reliable and transparent information about life cycle impacts

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