Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Uncertainty Regarding Waste Handling in Everyday Life
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Urban Planning and Environment, Environmental Strategies.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0643-2934
2010 (English)In: Sustainability, ISSN 2071-1050, Vol. 2, no 9, 2799-2813 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

According to our study, based on interviews with households in a residential area in Sweden, uncertainty is a cultural barrier to improved recycling. Four causes of uncertainty are identified. Firstly, professional categories not matching cultural categories—people easily discriminate between certain categories (e.g., materials such as plastic and paper) but not between others (e.g., packaging and “non-packaging”). Thus a frequent cause of uncertainty is that the basic categories of the waste recycling system do not coincide with the basic categories used in everyday life. Challenged habits—source separation in everyday life is habitual, but when a habit is challenged, by a particular element or feature of the waste system, uncertainty can arise. Lacking fractions—some kinds of items cannot be left for recycling and this makes waste collection incomplete from the user’s point of view and in turn lowers the credibility of the system. Missing or contradictory rules of thumb—the above causes seem to be particularly relevant if no motivating principle or rule of thumb (within the context of use) is successfully conveyed to the user. This paper discusses how reducing uncertainty can improve recycling.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 2, no 9, 2799-2813 p.
Keyword [en]
cultural categories; waste; everyday life; habits; environmental sustainability; social practices
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-62744DOI: 10.3390/su2092799ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84866714621OAI: diva2:491077
QC 20120424Available from: 2012-02-06 Created: 2012-01-20 Last updated: 2012-04-24Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

Publisher's full textScopus

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Greger, Henriksson
By organisation
Environmental Strategies
In the same journal

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Altmetric score

Total: 49 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link