CRITICALC: Scoping a CRITICALity Life long Learning Course:

A project of Leiden University-CML (Netherlands), TNO (Netherlands), Chalmers University (Sweden) and Fraunhofer ISI (Germany) funded by the EIT Raw Materials

Assessing the criticality of materials as input into production processes is crucial for companies, countries and economic sectors. It helps to understand how vulnerable their economic performance is to supply disruptions. Various methods and approaches for assessing criticality have been developed, most notably by the National Research Council in the US, the European Commission, and others from academia, government and industry. The CRITICALC project, funded by the EIT Raw Materials, will build an education program on criticality assessment that can be used in MSc, PhD and lifelong learning programs. Learning objectives are to understand what makes materials critical and how to assess criticality and analyse economic and other implications of criticality at company, sector and country level. From there, professionals can develop strategies to reduce criticality risks. To support the learning objectives, we envisage to redevelop and use a criticality assessment tool developed by TNO for Dutch SMEs (‘grondstofscanner’). During this workshop at WRF the project team wants to cross-check decisions made in the scoping phase of the project with a wider audience, to come up with the best possible mix of course materials and supporting tools for the different needs of the audience.


The workshop takes place on Thursday 24 October 12.30-14.00. The inception report that is input to this workshop can be downloaded from here. The program is as follows:


  1. Introduction to CRITICALC and welcome (5 min, Prof. Arnold Tukker, Leiden University – CML and TNO, Netherlands)

2. Inception report: outline educational program and supportive tool (15 min, Dr. Luis Tercero, Fraunhofer ISI, Germany )

a. Concepts of criticality

b. Proposed course outline

c. Initial review of available on-line criticality assessment tools

3. Discussion in 2 parallel groups, or a single group if the audience is small (40 min)

a. Educational program (moderated by Associate Prof. Maria Ljunggren Söderman, Chalmers University, Sweden / Prof. Arnold Tukker, LU-CML and TNO, Netherlands)

b. Supportive tool, illustrated by tests with e.g. the Dutch Raw Material Scanner (Mr. Elmer Rietveld, TNO, Netherlands / Dr. Luis Tercero, FhG-ISI, Germany)

4. Feedback and discussion (15-20 min, Prof. Arnold Tukker, Dr. Benjamin Sprecher, LU-CML and TNO, Netherlands)

a. Financial sustainability

b. Practical options for live testing (particularly PhD schools and Vocational training options)

c. Summary and conclusions