Guidance for Communicating hotspots: The effective use of
Guidance for Communicating hotspots: The effective use of sustainability information to drive action and improve performance Contents Purpose of this guidance and why it is needed? How to use this guidance? Rationale behind this guidance What is hotspots analysis and how it is being applied? What kind of information is derived from hotspots analysis and what is it used for? Who are the target audiences for this information? Examples of hotspots anlaysis communication
General considerations relating to information derived from hotspots analysis Guiding principles Validation of hotspots analysis information and communication Visualising information from hotspots analysis Best practice examples Alignment of this guidance with the 10YFP CI-SCP guidelines for providing product sustainability information Additional references and sources of information Contacts 2 Purpose and need for this guidance Purpose: To promote the use of clear, accurate and relevant claims and information arising from hotspots analysis to enable actions to be taken by decision-makers and other key stakeholders, including the end users of consumer products To support the implementation of the hotspots analysis methodological framework Need: To understand and follow best practice To provide clear, unambiguous information which is actionable by those best-placed to address the hotspots identified in any study To have greater confidence on the claims/information and actions arising from hotspots analysis To highlight that the ultimate aim of hotspots analysis is to be able to distil and communicate often complex technical information to an end user/consumer in a way that allows them to more easily understand and act on it for significant/optimum sustainability benefit
To align with other standards, codes and guidance (please see other useful references at the end of this guidance) 3 How to use this guidance This guidance is meant to be used alongside the Hotspots analysis methodological guidance development report Phase 1 and Phase 2. Specifically Step 7 - Presentation and Communication of the hotspots analysis methodological guidance This guidance includes: A brief background to hotspots analysis Target audience and examples of communication vehicles General considerations for communicating information from hotspots analysis Validation of hotspots communication and information Core principles for communication Principles for communicating the information visually Best practice examples Other useful reference documents 4 Rationale behind this communication guidance What is this communication guidance? This guidance helps to ensure that the results from hotspots analysis are used to support informed
decision-making and to drive action across the different stakeholders that are best placed to take action, recognising that their information needs and technical knowledge may vary considerably. Why is this communication guidance developed? Hotspots analysis is not just an impact and benefits quantification exercise it is intended to provide actionable information to stakeholders. Therefore, the communication of results to those stakeholders able to take action is a critically important step in any hotspots analysis study. Who is expected to use this communication guidance? This guidance is expected to be used by practitioners using the UNEP/SETAC LCI hotspots analysis methodological framework to drive change; and those wanting to commission a hotspots analysis study. This would include hotspots analysis methodology developers, pratitioners and life cycle experts, sustainability officers, academics, policy developers, marketing professionals, civic societies, trade associations and sector representable bodies, government departments, and agencies, etc. How does this guidance fit with the hotspots analysis methodological framework? Step 7 of the UNEP/SETAC LCI hotspots analysis methodology framework describes the basic process that users need to go through to ensure the efficient and effective use and communication of study findings to a wider audience. This communication guidance supports a number of steps in the methodological framework, providing specific guidance on the principles to be followed and best practice examples of how and who to communicate with to ensure that action is taken. 5
What is Hotspots Analysis A methodological framework that allows for the rapid assimilation and analysis of a range of information sources, including life cycle based and market information, scientific research, expert opinion and stakeholder concerns. (UNEP 2014) Purpose Precursor for detailed or granular study Prioritize significant impacts and benefits Governance Prioritize and implement solutions Identify Actions Economic
Social Environmental Scale of Application Product/ Service Product category Product portfolio Lifestyle Industry sector City Country 6 How is Hotspots Analysis being applied? Priority Products
Focusing on the products that matter by virtue of their impact and / or sales volumes Pathfinders & pilots Real world product improvement programmes (pilots, working groups, industry implementation) Value chain optimisation and resource efficiency Tescos global food loss and waste initiative Sustainability Indices From domestic appliances to public gardens Water catchment management* Understanding water scarcity hotspots and water resource management 7 *Greenhouses in San Agustin near Almera, Andalusia, Spain (3642 N 244 W) Yann Arthus-Bertrand / Altitude Type of information derived from hotspots analysis 8 Target Audience(s)
Target Audience Leadership and experts at NGOs Broader Audience Policy researchers and experts Decision makers at Govt officials NGOs responsible for policy Policy developers development Government agencies Academic experts and Academics researchers Companies Chief sustainability Consumers officers and expert team Trade bodies members Product/ service buyers Technical representatives at trade bodies
Technical Audience Non Technical Audience Technical representatives at NGOs / trade bodies Product, Category and Brand Managers Corporate teams e.g. technical, sustainability, etc. Marketing personnel and advertisers Academics and research institutes
Senior decisionmakers (e.g. board members) Other subject matter experts e.g. technical advisers Investors / donors Relevant government policy experts B2B and B2C relationships 9 Example from Hotspots Analysis: from information to action Case Study: Environmental hotspots for a Household Cleaning Product Hotspots identified Action
Communication vehicle Actors 1) Raw materials: 5-7 high impact ingredients 2) Recyclability of pack - trigger assembly not recyclable 3) Product wastage: from inconsistent spray application / dosing 1) Reformulation: chemical to algal surfactants 2) Recyclability: move to single polymer trigger 3) Reduce wastage: redesign nozzle / new dosage information Internal & external communication* Internal & external communication* Internal communication,
retailers and consumers *(on-pack & at point of sale) Product developers, suppliers, consumers Product designers, suppliers, marketing team, consumers Product developers & technologists / buyers/ suppliers 10 *Refer notes below for details Example for Hotspots Analysis Communication- Product Category TSC works at the product category level, using a hotspot methodology called the Sustainability Measurement and Reporting System. Below are the different communication vehicles used to enable action from the hotspots results (Example: Dairy) Key Performance Indicators
Audience: Retailers; Brands / Tier 1 Suppliers Sustainability Insights and Supply chain diagram Audience: General public; Business users without sustainability expertise Communication by business users: e.g. Walmarts Sustainability Leaders Badge Audience: Consumers 11 General Considerations A robust study with clearly defined scope can be used and communicated in many ways Availability and clarity of underpinning data and information (including assumptions made and use of any proxy data) Clarity and transparency around the most material
(relevant) and critical issues Clarity and transparency on extent of expert / stakeholder engagement and consistency of feedback Diversity and level of inclusiveness of expert / stakeholder engagement process Geographical applicability and relevance of hotspots, data, information gathering and expert / stakeholder representation Use of widely accepted methodology for hotspots analysis 12 Guiding Principles Overview 13
How to Read Shall, Should and May The principles described in this guidance uses shall, should and may to distinguish between requirements and recommendations. The terminologies are based on ISO/TS 14072 and ISO 14044/ISO 14040 in that order. Shall is used when this strength of obligation is also required in the aforementioned guidance documents Should is used to identify recommended elements that can be disregarded with proper justification. May is used for other allowed elements or alternatives. Each of the guiding principles have a mandatory (shall) element (sub-aspect) to them. Some also have discretionary/optional sub-aspects (should/may) that are intended to illustrate best practice or offer useful examples on how a given principle can be met. 14 Guiding Principles (a) Guiding principles: a. Life Cycle Approach
Sub Aspects The user shall ensure that the information provided reflects impacts / hotspots from all life cycle stages The user shall use whole value chain thinking What it means/ example Information provided shall be material to the shortlisted hotspots identified and acknowledge that there are / may be hotspots in other phases of the lifecycle May specify where the hotspot is physically located; and with relevant stakeholders, communication shall include the best ways or actors to address it (ensuring the actionability of information provided) 15 Guiding Principles (b) Guiding principles: b. Reliability Sub Aspects What it means/ example Information communicated shall be
supported by a clear statement of the level of confidence in the study findings E.g. quality and completeness of underlying data and information that forms the basis of the study / communication Users shall ensure that the hotspots methodology used and the way it is applied is appropriate to the way in which information is likely to be communicated E.g. if the study is not suitable for comparing sectors or products, it should not be used or communicated in such a way Data quality should reflect the goal and scope of the study and any intended use or communication of findings Communications should reflect the currency, accuracy and temporal / geographical scope of the underlying study data 16 Guiding Principles (c) Guiding principles: c. Relevance
Sub Aspects Information* shall be relevant to the scope, actions and solutions identified to address each hotspot The information* provided from study findings shall be relevant and appropriate to the scale of application, system or situation in which it will be used What it means/ example Information* provided shall support/ be supported by the findings of the study e.g. if a shortlisted hotspot exists at end of life, guidance should be provided to help consumers dispose of or recycle - a product responsibly E.g. information* from a hotspots study on large scale farming in Europe is unlikely to provide a lot of relevant information for produce from a small-scale farm in Latin America; and therefore care should be taken in how it is used *Information should reflect positive & negative aspects of sector or product performance to enable a reasoned assessment of overall performance. 17 Guiding Principles (d)
Guiding principles: d. Clarity Sub Aspects Information provided shall be commensurated with the level of confidence in the study findings to support effective decision-making and facilitate action by all relevant stakeholders What it means/ example Information derived from the study shall be structured in a way that is actionable and provides sufficient context for informed decision-making by technical and non-technical audiences. The use of visualisation (e.g. info-graphics / decision-trees) in support of textual information can support this objective Clarity shall be provided on sources used to provide the information including exclusions, assumptions and proxies etc. Sources for the information shall be clearly referenced The target audience should be able to substantiate the information they receive. Any exclusions, assumptions, models and proxies used should be clearly stated to provide clarity and transparency to the target audience and allow for informed decision-making. This would
include the sources used to provide information, including the level of confidence that the source provides in relation to the hotspot and the (range of) actions that could be used to address it 18 Guiding Principles (e) Guiding principles: e. Collaboration Sub Aspects What it means/ example The type of stakeholders involved, extent of collaboration and feedback shall be considered in planning communications (this may involve consideration of the percentage of the market represented in any stakeholder engagement undertaken during the study)* E.g. national/ sector representation including stakeholders that represent the most impactful/ actionable life cycle phases. This may include SMEs, academics, corporates, NGOs, etc. Frequency of meetings / consultations with stakeholders; and effectiveness of feedback process e.g. include medium and process to accept or reject feedback.
The most appropriate communications vehicle to use and disseminate the study findings should be considered in planning communications Issues such as geography, language, mobility and technology should be considered in selecting any communication vehicle e.g. face-to-face meetings, launch events, workshops, webinars or telephone calls; written actions required The most appropriate feedback mechanisms should be considered for users of the information being communicating to / with E.g. website, on-line or telephone surveys, email addresses, telephone contact number / enquiry line 19 *NOTE: as an example, the EU Environmental Footprinting methodology requires more than 50% of a market to be involved in a study. Guiding Principles (f) Guiding principles: f. Transparency Sub Aspects The type of stakeholders involved, extent of engagement and collaboration; and volume
and consistency of feedback provided during the hotspots analysis study shall be clearly communicated The sources and context for study reference materials relating to the information provided shall be transparent to those receiving the information What it means/ example e.g. involvement of SMEs, academics, corporates, NGOs, consumer groups, etc. during the study. Meeting intervals with stakeholders, feedback process e.g. include medium and process to accept or reject feedback. Any confidentiality issues should be understood and addressed The sources, context and reliability of the study materials relating to any information provided should be accurately described to ensure that it is useful and credible to end users e.g. list of published/open/easily accessible materials used in support of communications. Any confidentiality issues should be understood and addressed 20 Validation of Hotspots Analysis
information & communication Developing steps and a process for validating: a) the information to be communicated to stakeholders; and b) the most effective communications vehicle for the audience, improves the chances of successful communication and the effectiveness of any actions On-line / phone surveys, social media, etc. M&S Think 30 degrees campaign, lower temperature / impact washing Use of hot water is identified as a hotspot for clothes and laundry detergents 21 Visualisation of Hotspots Analysis (1) General principles on visualisation of hotspots analysis 1 2 3 4 5 6 22
Visualisation of Hotspots Analysis (2) Clear language, no ambiguity Explicit about meaning of the symbol used Clarity in scope Link available for more information Relevant and easy to understand imagery Clarity in scope Language is simple to understand Link available for more information 23 Visualisation of Hotspots Analysis (3) Action oriented Language- easy to understand Clarity in scope
Link available for more information Scenarios communicated clearly Imagery simple to understand- no ambiguity Clarity in scope Link available for more information 24 Visualisation of Hotspots Analysis (4) Clarity in scope, data applicability and limitations identified 25 Linkages to UN SDGs The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) (Global Goals For Sustainable Development) Consider linking the actions taken to reduce the impact of hotspots to the appropriate UN SDG for Communication and Visualization 26 Alignment of this Communication Guidance with the
10YFP CI-SCP Guidelines for Providing Product Sustainability Information* Title Guidelines for Providing Product Sustainability Information Hotspots Analysis Communication Guidance Purpose International guidance for reliable sustainability information and product-related communications and claims. Use and communication of information derived from hotspots analysis and the communication of results to those actors best placed to take action to address hotspots Target audience Information providers and watchdogs, such as producers and retailers, marketing professionals, procurers, governments, market surveillance bodies, NGOs, as well as labelling bodies.
Direct and indirect, technical and non-technical audiences depending on the goal and scope of hotspots analysis. e.g. Chief Sustainability Officers, product developers, marketing professionals, government bodies, civil society groups, policy makers, etc. Main difference in approaches to underlying principles Life Cycle Thinking is a required principle Application Life Cycle Thinking is an underlying/ encouraged principle, not mandatory. Relevance (covering significant aspects, i.e. hotspots) is required Products ( goods and services) Visualisation principles Not covered yet Covered including best practice examples
Principles alignment Principle are aligned in context with the purpose Principles are aligned in context with the purpose Products, product categories, sectors of the economy, city-scale, national-level 27 Additional references & sources Additional references and sources of information: ISEAL (2015b). Building demand for sustainable commodities. How brands and retailers are engaging domestic markets in Brazil, China and India (London: ISEAL Alliance) Green Claims Guidance (2011) DEFRA Mikael Klintman (2015). A Review of Public Policies Relating to the Use of Environmental Labelling and Information Schemes (ELIS) The Consumer Ombudsman Norway (2009). The Consumer Ombudsmans Guidelines on the Use of Environmental and Ethical Claims in Marketing (Norway) ISO (2000). ISO 14020:2000 Environmental labels and declarations General Principles (Geneva: International Organization for Standardization) United Nations (2003). United Nations Guidelines for Consumer Protection. 10YFP CI-SCP Guidelines for providing product sustainability information (forthcoming). http://www.isealalliance.org/infographic/iseals-credibility-principles https://www.greenbiz.com/article/case-sustainable-food-system-12-charts
28 Additional references & sources (2) Additional references and sources of information: Code of Advertising and Marketing (ICC, 2011), Environmental Footprint Guide (European Commission, 2013) European Meta Study on Environmental Information Guidelines (DG Justice, 2015), ISO 14021 (ISO, 2000) Five Universal Truths Challenge the label (ISEAL, 2015b)
OECD (Mikael Klintman, 2015) GENICES Member Guide (GEN, n.n.) Claims or fair eco-advertising in Practice (CENIA, 2010) Credibility Principles (ISEAL, 2013) 29 Contacts To learn more about the Life Cycle Initiative, please refer to www.lifecycleinitiative.org Contact: [email protected] To learn more about the 10YFP Consumer Information Programme for Sustainable Consumption and Production, please refer to http:// www.scpclearinghouse.org/consumer-information-scp Contact: [email protected] 30
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