Important legal notice
Contact   |   Search on EUROPA   
Environment - Understanding the environment and the impacts of green technologies
“To provide tools for improving the impact assessment of inter-related policy areas for sustainable development.”

The problem

In order to respond to the European Union’s strategy for sustainable development and to promote better law-making, the European Commission is committed to performing impact assessments (IAs) for all policy proposals. These IAs take an integrated approach, considering the economic, environmental and social dimensions of policy, and their interlinkages. Their aim is to improve coordination between these different policy areas. At present there is a need for tools to implement the IA process.

I.Q.TOOLS  Tools for assessing the sustainability of proposed policies


I.Q.TOOLS addresses the need for improved tools to evaluate all aspects of sustainability in proposed EU policies.

The project includes a qualitative aspect (I-Tool) and a quantitative one (Q-Tool). It will produce the following specific outputs:

  • A review of existing assessments and an electronic handbook of good practices
  • A checklist of impacts
  • An inventory of available economic and integrated models that can be used in future IAs
  • The further development of an existing macroeconomic model to better quantify indirect effects and interlinkages between policy areas
  • A common interface combining the qualitative and quantitative parts of the tool 

Contribution to policy development:

I.Q. TOOLS will provide:

  • Policy-makers with a desktop software tool that helps assess the compliance of draft policies with sustainability objectives
  • Reference documentation on impact assessment methods, existing modelling tools and practices
  • A checklist of sustainability impacts and a macroeconomic model that quantifies the interlinkages across policy areas (economic, environmental and social)

Project deliverables

  • Review of sustainability impact assessment – April 2004
  • Inventory of existing impacts and models – April 2004
  • Development of I-tool (impacts/indicators) – January 2005
  • Development of Q-tool (quantification) – December 2005
  • Test and review of I.Q. Tools – December 2005
  • Production of electronic handbook – December 2005


  • Publications in scientific literature – December 2005
  • Presentations at conferences – December 2005
  • Electronic handbook – December 2005

Technical information

Project acronym: I.Q. TOOLS
Project’s official full title: Indicators and Quantitative Tools for Improving the Process of Sustainability Impact Assessment
Research priority: Priority 8: Policy-orientated research. Task 3
Specific webpage:
Proposal/contract no: 502078
Start date: 01/01/2004
Kick off meeting: 2004
Completion date: 31/12/2005
European Commission scientific officer: Marialuisa Tamborra (

Name: Centre for European Economic Research
Abbreviated Name: ZEW
Address: PO Box 103443 - D-68034 -Mannheim
Country: Germany
Tel: +49 621 1235 207
Fax: +49 621 1235 226


Name: Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex
Abbreviated Name: SPRU
Country: United Kingdom 

Abbreviated Name: Avanzi
Country: Italy

Name: Environmental Policy Research Centre, Freie Universität Berlin
Abbreviated Name: FFU
Country: Germany

Name: Institute for Prospective Technological Studies, Joint Research Centre
Abbreviated Name: IPTS
Country: Spain

Name: Institute for European Environmental Policy
Abbreviated Name: IEEP
Country: United Kingdom

Name: Interdisciplinary Center for Scientific Computing, Universität Heidelberg
Abbreviated Name: IWR
Country: Germany