“We still haven’t solved Jevon’s paradox”

Friday, 02 February, 2018

Henrikke Baumann, researcher at Chalmers University of Technology, with more than 20 years’ experience from LCA related research is now professor. Last Friday, February 26, she invited to a lecture and Swedish Life Cycle’s technical secretariat was there. It was an hour filled with picks from her extensive career as a researcher accompanied with her own reflections.

– The LCA research field has changed a lot since the start of my journey and now it is quite fragmented. There are researchers focusing on monetarization, systems, social LCA and much more but there are several exciting topics still to dig into! Baumann says.

Henrikke Bauman has put a unique perspective to the LCA research by populating it. And the title of the lecture reveals some of the content: “People & flows in product ecologies”. A fascinating story about social systems and technical systems, and how we can understand the interaction between the two.

Looking back at the 20 last years, Baumann seems to be ambivalent concerning the future of the planet:

– Yes, there are a lot of positive, sustainable initiatives around the globe, but is it fast enough? And we still haven’t solved Jevon’s paradox: The situation that occurs when technological progress increases the resource efficiency, but the rate of consumption of that resource rises because of increasing demand.

Thanks, Henrikke for an interesting lecture and congratulations to the title Professor!


Text: Ulrika Georgsson