An integrated approach for green design: Life-cycle, fuzzy AHP and environmental management accounting

Hing Kai Chan*, Xiaojun Wang, Anna Raffoni

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Citations (Scopus)


The growing awareness of environmental issues has made the design of eco-friendly products a critical task for modern businesses. Almost all the costs and the environmental performance of a product over its life-cycle are determined in its design and development phase. The selection of alternative green designs is, however, a major challenge in today's competitive environment. The increasing pressure on time-to-market conflicts with the analytical approach typically required when using conventional environmental management accounting (EMA) tools such as Life-Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Life-Cycle Costing (LCC). This paper introduces a comprehensive method that integrates the LCA and EMA concepts, fuzzy logic and Analytical Hierarchical Process (AHP), to measure the environmental and organisational performance of different designs. We propose a screening model to help designers reduce their reliance on LCA and present a case study to demonstrate that this approach provides a systematic method of evaluating alternative designs and identifying product design improvement options. The measurement approach presented in this research can help companies reduce development lead time by screening out undesirable design options. More importantly, the approach can be modelled with the mere use of an Excel spreadsheet, which means limited resources are needed to implement the proposed method.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)344-360
Number of pages17
JournalBritish Accounting Review
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Elsevier Ltd.


  • Environmental management accounting
  • Fuzzy-AHP
  • Life-cycle
  • Product development
  • Sustainability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Accounting


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