Resource efficiency in Swiss hospitals


To make the Swiss hospital environment more sustainable we are analysing the consumption of resources by hospital processes in partnership with Swiss hospitals. In addition, we will develop and test specific proposals for process optimisation.

​​Project description (ongoing research project)

Which processes in a hospital are particularly resource-intensive and how can they be made more cost-efficient and environment-friendly? To answer these questions we will analyse relevant hospital processes from an environmental perspective and determine how processes in hospitals can be structured more resource-efficiently. Together with partner hospitals (Hôpitaux Universitaires Genève, Insel Gruppe and GZO Spital Wetzikon) we will develop and test specific implementation proposals. Based on the collected data we will analyse the efficiency of hospitals from cost and environmental perspectives.


Although healthcare is the fourth most important consumer sector from an environmental perspective (after food, mobility and housing), there are hardly any comprehensive environmental assessments. Thus, it is not clear where the greatest levers for possible improvements are, and how these can be implemented. Furthermore, no efficiency analyses have been conducted in the hospital sector to date that include not only costs, but also environmental impacts.


The cited research gaps are to be closed as follows:

  1. By developing comprehensive insights into the resource requirements and their efficiency in the Swiss hospital sector.
  2. By determining key environmental impact factors and resource efficiency within hospitals’ lifecycles.
  3. By preparing a list of environmentally friendly processes and verifying their feasibility.
  4. By testing practical applications of environmentally friendly processes in the hospitals context.


The life cycle analysis will contribute towards a comprehensive ecological sustainability perspective, which will in particular support Sustainable Development Goals nos. 9 (industry, innovation and infrastructure), 12 (responsible consumption and production), 13 (climate action), 14 (life below water), 15 (life on land). In addition, goal no. 3 (good health and well-being) will be supported by optimising hospital processes and increasing the efficiency of hospitals.

Original title

Green Hospital - Environmental Impact Assessment, Resource Efficiency, and Hands-on Applications

Project leaders

Direction du projet

  • Matthias Stucki, Institut für Umwelt und Natürliche Ressourcen, Zürcher Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaften (ZHAW)
  • Dr. Stefan Meyer, Institut für Wirtschaftsstudien Basel IWSB
  • Dr. Sebastian Wibbeling, Fraunhofer-Institut für Materialfluss und Logistik IML, Deutschland

Partenaires de projet ​

  • ​GZO Spital Wetzikon
  • Hirslanden Group
  • Inselspital



Further information on this content



Matthias Stucki Institut für Umwelt und Natürliche Ressourcen, Zürcher Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaften ZHAW Grüental 8820 Wädenswil +41 58 934 57 19

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