SL2543 Sustainable product development

Single subject course, 7,5 Higher education credits, Second cycle, autumn semester 2021


Apply via

Building on their knowledge and skills from previous courses, students will learn how to (1) perform sustainability analysis in product development and (2) generate ideas for improvement based on the analysis. They will learn (3) advantages and disadvantages of various approaches to the above and (4) how to integrate these approaches into concept development. Competence in sustainable product development is in demand in industry and society. The course develops theoretical understanding and applied skills at the intersection of two of BTH's areas of expertise – sustainability and product development.


  • Type of instruction: On campus, day, part-time 50%
  • Application code: BTH-G5855
  • Period : 2021-November-01 until 2022-January-16
  • Education level: A1N
  • Application: Apply via
  • Language of instruction: The course is taught primarily in English, but teaching in Swedish may occur.
  • Location: Karlskrona
  • Main field of study: Strategic Leadership towards Sustainability
  • Course syllabus: Download
  • Welcome letter: Link to welcome letter from responsible teacher will be posted here no later than 3 weeks before the course begins.
  • Entry requirements: Admission to the course requires completed at least 6 credits in a basic course in strategic sustainable development, such as the course Sustainability basics, completed at least 2 credits in basic understanding of product development and 1 credits in sustainability analysis in product development, for example from the course Innovative and sustainable product development.


Students will learn to applystrategic sustainability thinking and some selected supporting approaches, methods and tools to analyse and iteratively improve the sustainability performance of product concepts during the concept development phase of a product innovation process.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

  • apply Ecological Life-Cycle Assessment (LCA) to analyse and compare ecological sustainability performance and identify opportunities for improvement of product concepts.
  • apply social LCA to analyse and compare social sustainability performance and identify opportunities for improvement of product concepts.
  • apply design for recycling as an example of how to generate ideas for improved sustainability performance of a given product concept.
  • propose materials for a material choice gate decision and justify why the choice likely leads to increased (ecological and social) sustainability performance.
  • compare the approaches, methods and tools included in the course in order to identify their advantages and disadvantages and describe how they can be integrated into the concept development phase.

Competence and skills
  • perform the sustainability analysis (above) even with limited information.
  • use analysis results to critically explain the sustainability performance of a product system.
  • communicate analysis results in writing, in English, and include arguments for choice of scope and assumptions made.
  • foster team success by setting teamwork goals, peer-mentoring, building upon strengths, and overcoming weaknesses.

Judgement and approach
  • identify own need for further knowledge in sustainable product development.

Course literature and other teaching material

Material kommer att tillhandahållas via lärplattformen.

Course literature and other teaching material

Material kommer att tillhandahållas via lärplattformen.

Learning methods

Students will learn through a combination of project-based learning, reading and lectures or seminars.

Work placement

No work placement is included in the planned learning activities. BTH is aiming for a close contact with the surrounding community when developing courses and programmes.


  1. Rachael Gould
Course Manager
  1. Rachael Gould

Time allocation

On average, a student should study 200 hours to reach the learning outcomes.
This time includes all the various available learning activities (lectures, self studies, examinations, etc.).
This estimation is based on the fact that one academic year counts as 60 ECTS credits,
corresponding to an average student workload of 1 600 hours. This may vary individually.



The course will be graded A Excellent, B Very good, C Good, D Satisfactory, E Sufficient, FX Insufficient, supplementation required, F Fail.


More information about exams are found in the Student's Portal, where you also enrolls for most exams.

There might be other scheduled examinations. Information regarding these examinations are available in the learning platform Canvas or at other places that the person who is responsible of the course will refer to.

Course Evaluation

The course manager is responsible for the views of students on the course being systematically and regularly gathered and that the results of the evaluations in various forms affect the form and development of the course.

Do you have a question? Type it here and we will get back to you as soon as possible!