Winners of the 2017 Graedel Prizes

In 2013, the Graedel Prizes were established to honor Professor Thomas Graedel, now emeritus at Yale University after an outstanding career as researcher and pioneer in the field of industrial ecology (IE). The prizes are awarded to the best two papers published in the Journal of Industrial Ecology (JIE) every year. Winners receive $750 and a free membership in the International Society for Industrial Ecology. Funding for the prizes was generously provided in honor of Thomas Graedel by the Nickel Institute, GE, A-1 Recycling, the Raw Materials Group Stockholm, and AT&T.

After deliberation, the Committee voted to award two prizes in the JIE Junior Author Best Paper category this year. Papers are nominated by members of the JIE Editorial Board or the Prize Committee and are then evaluated against three criteria: (1) professional merit; (2) contribution; and (3) presentation quality.

The winners of the 2017 Junior Best Papers are as follows:

  • Trevor Zink and Roland Geyer for their paper on “Circular economy rebound.” Zink (figure 1) is Assistant Professor of Management at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California, USA; Geyer is a professor at the University of California – Santa Barbara, CA, USA.
  • Guillaume Majeau-Bettez, Thomas Dandres, Stefan Pauliuk, Richard Wood, Edgar Hertwich, Réjean Samson, and Anders Hammer Strømman for their paper on the “Choice of Allocations and Constructs for Attributional or Consequential Life Cycle Assessment and Input-Output Analysis.” Majeau-Bettez (figure 2) is a Post-Doctoral Researcher with CIRAIG, at Polytechnique Montreal, Canada and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim, Norway. Dandres and Samson are with CIRAIG. Wood and Hammer Strømman are with the Industrial Ecology Programme at NTNU. Pauliuk is at the University of Freiburg, Germany and Hertwich is at Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA.

Trevor ZinkGuillaume Mejeau-Bettez

Left: Trevor Zink, lead author of 2017 Graedel Prize for best paper by a junior author.
Right: Guillaume Majeau-Bettez, lead author of 2017 Graedel Prize for best paper by a junior author.

The paper by Zink and Geyer is a highly original article on the potential rebound of the circular economy. With engaging text and excellent diagrams, it provides a clear explanation of the circular economy as a system of markets and the mechanisms of rebound. The Committee found it to be a provocative and persuasive paper, with the beauty of not being overly complicated. The authors use conceptual ideas, literature review and two simple, but elegant, equations to demonstrate an important rebound effect affecting the efficacy of the circular economy. Insights of the paper are highly policy relevant, with a discussion of how to avoid circular economy rebound adding a positive tone.

The paper by Majeau-Bettez and colleagues is a great contribution for the LCA community within industrial ecology that has been wrestling with the issue of allocation models in relation to attributional and consequential LCA. Building upon an extensive literature review, a thorough and comprehensive analysis is conducted to develop axiomatic characteristics for attributional and consequential coproduction models. The Committee found the paper to be original and meticulous, with essential arguments carefully presented to produce a work of high scientific and professional quality.
The Committee also gives a special mention to an excellent paper by Martinico‐Perez, and colleagues (2017) on material flows and their driving factors during economic growth in the Philippines.

The prize-winning papers demonstrate high quality work at the cutting edge of industrial ecology theory—addressing key issues of allocation in LCA and input-output analysis--and the significance of the practical application of the concepts in the field—revealing the potential for rebound in the circular economy. We look forward to recognizing more such high quality papers in the future.

A blog post series on the 2017 Graedel Prize Winners is published on the ISIE website.
Read the blog posts here:
Circular Economy Rebound.
Choice of Allocations and Constructs for Attributional or Consequential Life Cycle Assessment and Input‐Output Analysis.