Technology and Society Lab
The Technology and Society Lab (TSL) is Empa's interdisciplinary research unit which analyzes technologies embedded in social processes, focusing on the interactions among technology, environment and society with an emphasis on material flows connected with emerging technology applications.
TSL creates knowledge that supports industry in developing technologies that are beneficial and acceptable for society. It helps to minimize the risks of new technologies and contributes to sustainability by giving early warnings of critical developments in technology applications. The technological scope of the Lab is on Nano-, Energy-, Mobility- and Information and Communication Technologies. Most of our publications are available via our publications list. Furthermore, our list of PhD, Master and Bachelor Theses 2009 to 2013 gives another broad view of our activities.
The competence of the Lab lies in the development and application of methods such as Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), System Dynamics, Agent-Based Modelling, Material Flow Modelling, Risk Modelling and Integrated Technology Assessment. The technological scope of the Lab encompasses Nano- and Energy Technologies, Information and Communication Technologies and Future Mobility. The Lab is organized in four groups:
- The Advancing Life Cycle Assessment group investigates further improvements of the life cycle assessment framework.
- The Critical Materials and Resource Efficiency group investigates resource efficiency and the recovery and reintegration of secondary materials into the product life cycle.
- The Environmental Risk Assessment and Management group evaluates, models and experimentally investigates the interactions of materials with the environment originating from new technology applications and products.
- The Informatics and Sustainability Research group develops computational models, algorithm-based methodologies and information systems to support sustainable development.