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Categorization of Indicators for Sustainable Manufacturing



Shaw C. Feng, Che B. Joung, Prabir Sarkar, John Carrell


Manufacturers around the globe have become aware of the importance of sustainable manufacturing. They are increasing their efforts to become more sustainable by using sustainability-related indicators to assess their performance; however, in these efforts, manufacturers find a large number of stand-alone indicator sets. This has caused complications in terms of understanding related terminology and selecting specific indicator sets relating to different aspects of sustainability. Manufacturers are seeking an open, inclusive, and neutral set of indicators to measure sustainability of manufactured products and manufacturing processes. The purpose of this work is to provide a categorization of indicators that are quantifiable and clearly related to sustainability. This work also intends to establish an integrated sustainability indicator repository as a means to educate manufacturers, as well as academicians, in current indicators and measures of sustainability. This paper presents an integration of thirteen widely used sustainability indicator sets into an all-inclusive sustainability indicator set. Indicators are categorized into five dimensions of sustainability: environmental stewardship, economic growth, social well-being, technological advancement, and performance management based on their mutual similarity. Also explained is how a company can use this indicator set to assess their sustainability manufacturing initiatives.
Journal of Ecological Indicators


Sustainable Manufacturing, Sustainability Indicator, Sustainability Measurement, Sustainability Measurement Infrastructure.


Feng, S. , Joung, C. , Sarkar, P. and Carrell, J. (2013), Categorization of Indicators for Sustainable Manufacturing, Journal of Ecological Indicators, [online], (Accessed May 21, 2024)


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Created May 9, 2013, Updated February 19, 2017