A project of the MIT Media Lab, SourceMap aims to provide insight on the origins of the products we consume, tracking their every component. The open-source tool gives registered users a platform for building a database composed of the origin, carbon footprint, and other impact-relevant characteristics of manufactured items. The project provides analysis tools such that producers, businesses owners and consumers can gather information concerning the impact of various supply chains to guide sustainable decision-making.
The Sourcemap team describes the project:
We use linked data from geological and geographic resources and rely on user contributions and a panel of advisers to keep information up-to-date. Each Sourcemap can be used to help market socially- and environmentally-conscious products and to evaluate carbon offsets. Supply chains published on the site can be embedded in external Web sites, printed onto product packaging, or linked through QR codes that are readable by camera phones. As the site grows, suppliers will be able to contribute their products to the Sourcemap database, providing a geographic catalogue of materials and products for sale around the world.