Transparency and secrecy

- for Materials Passports

Two topics of high importance for the development of Materials Passports are those of transparency and secrecy.

Information stored for Materials Passports should have a purpose. That means that is should be accessible by those parties capable of connecting it to an action. Having information stored which cannot be accessed due to secrecy is not beneficial for this.

In certain cases it is not realistic that important information will be made available transparently, even though there may be a general trend towards more knowledge and transparency in the years to come. This is for instance currently the case in the polymer industry, where compositional information is regarded as competitive knowledge.

There are cases where detailed information is important, but not necessary to be fully transparent to the public, as long as an evaluation of the information can be presented transparently. This is for instance the case for compositional information: The end user might not be interested in the full details of what is in a product, but more in the fact that a product contains no harmful substances or beneficially cleans the air. A building manager in turn might be more interested in for instance the next pathway of the product.

Third party knowledge trustees will have an important role in cases where detailed information is required, but cannot, will not, or does not have to be made public. Third party knowledge trustees will draw conclusions based on evaluations of detailed knowledge and make these conclusions available in Materials Passports.

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