The Handprint is an innovative and holistic approach to facilitate the measurement, evaluation and communication of the ecological, economic and social sustainability impacts of products.
The existing approach of the footprint focuses on negative ecological impacts on individuals, organizations or countries. The handprint on the other hand shall determine, measure and evaluate the positive sustainability impacts including the social and economic dimension. While the widespread footprint is used to metaphorically symbolize negative impacts the handprint represents the positive and innovative management contributing to a sustainable development.
In the framework of the BMBF funded project a consortium was built up of the Collaborating Centre on Sustainable Consumption and Production (CSCP), the University of Kassel, the Centre for Sustainability Management (CSM) of the Leuphana University Lüneburg and the Center on Sustainable Management (ZNU) of the economic faculty of the University Witten/Herdecke. In a period of three years (beginning June 2015) a methodology will be developed and applied within pilot projects on products of three sectors, including food, consumer goods and building/living. These pilot projects will be carried out in cooperation with small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and further partners. The goal is to illustrate the sustainability of the specific product based on scientific facts but also understandable for the end-consumer and companies.
Janpeter Beckmann, Collaborating Centre on Sustainable Consumption and Production (CSCP)