The participation of ethnic minorities in kerbside recycling: a case study

Williams, I.D. and Perry, G.D.R. (2007) The participation of ethnic minorities in kerbside recycling: a case study. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 49, (3), 308-323. (doi:10.1016/j.resconrec.2006.02.006).


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Although ethnic minorities currently make up a significant proportion of the UK population, little is known about their recycling traditions, attitudes and behaviours. This paper presents the results of a study into the participation of ethnic minorities in recycling in Preston, Lancashire, as well as exploring in some detail the recycling views and behaviours of first and second/third generation ethnic minorities.
The study used both quantitative and qualitative approaches. In order to compare participation and waste minimisation behaviours of different ethnic groups, a postal questionnaire was administered to households in the Broadgate area of Preston, which generated a response rate of 46%. A number of respondents from ethnic minorities were personally interviewed in order to identify and compare any inter-generational differences.
The results highlight that it is essential to understand the recycling profile of ethnic minorities and to ensure that their participation in recycling schemes is encouraged. This can be achieved by providing written information in ethnic minority languages and conducting presentations and focus-groups at religious or cultural centres in ethnic minority languages. The study indicates that there are differences in the waste management behaviours of different ethnic groups, with British Indians being more
likely to participate than their White British counterparts. The personal interviews reveal significant differences between the attitudes and participation levels of first and second/third generation ethnic minorities, with the latter group likely to have greater concern and awareness about environmental issues, but to reuse and minimise less than their parents and grandparents. Further research is neededto determine participation levels of other ethnic minorities such as those of Chinese, Afro-Caribbean and Bangladeshi decent

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1016/j.resconrec.2006.02.006
ISSNs: 0921-3449 (print)
Related URLs:
Keywords: ethnic minorities, waste minimisation schemes, kerbside recycling, social surveys, public participation
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
T Technology > TD Environmental technology. Sanitary engineering
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Civil Engineering and the Environment
ePrint ID: 53549
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
January 2007Published
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2008
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 12:32

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