SustainHub project overview

A number of new challenges for companies in the EU emerge in a globalised economic cycle. Manufacturers and their suppliers from the electronics and automotive industries are required to comply with restrictions for selling and exporting products in the EU. Directives like the RoHS and ELV interdict the use of certain substances. In addition, the REACH legislation requires companies to conform to a whole range of requirements related to production, import and use of materials.


SustainHub will therefore combine organisational and institutional measures with technical solutions. The system and the achieved improvement of sustainability performance along the entire life cycle will be verified and displayed on the basis of a new innovative product. The combination of the project results will address direct and indirect impacts. As such, it will lead to primary, e.g. reduction of hazardous substances, and secondary, e.g. child labour prevention, effects.


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SustainHub will not only increase the eco-efficiency of a single product, it will maximise the eco-efficiency and the sustainability along the entire supply chain. The widespread effects of the SustainHub network are also to help to preserve Europe’s competitive position. Especially for SMEs the expected impact of SustainHub will be remarkably high, as the developed system will reduce the time and effort of organisational processes for sustainability issues. 


SustainHub is a collaborative project within the 7th Framework Programme of the European Commission (Topic ENV.2011.3.1.9-1, Eco-innovation). The consortium consists of 15 partners from 7 countries, ranging from component suppliers to trade associations. To ensure the dissemination to SMEs across Europe, electronic/automotive OEMs and tier 1 n suppliers, consultancy experts, software industry, universities and applied research institutes are included. The Fraunhofer IPA was chosen as the project coordinator due to its well-known expertise for automation and manufacturing systems, its long-lasting experiences in executing international industry and research projects and its insight into specific needs and strategic interests of SMEs. The SMEs will represent a large fraction (55%) in the consortium and will account for all important decisions. The dissemination will be ensured by IDEA (International Distribution Association of Electronics) and Tecnoimprese and their direct access to 85% of the European electronic industry.

SustainHub started in Feb. 2012 and will be realised in Feb. 2015