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Nearest neighbour effects in kerbside household waste recycling

Shaw, Peter J. (2008) Nearest neighbour effects in kerbside household waste recycling Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 52, (5), pp. 775-784. (doi:10.1016/j.resconrec.2007.11.004).

Record type: Article


Although the factors influencing householders’ kerbside recycling behaviour are generally well understood, our understanding derives primarily from research that has considered households or householders as discrete, individual entities. Relatively little is known of whether and how the recycling behaviour of discrete households is influenced by social interactions with other households in close proximity, such as immediate neighbours. This study aimed therefore to assess social interaction effects on householders’ recycling behaviour at the level of immediate neighbours. Quantification of nearest neighbour interactions involved first the construction of a model to produce repeated randomly-allocated distributions of recycling participants. Spatial distributions of both modelled and observed kerbside recyclers were then enumerated in terms of the numbers of recycling households located between two neighbouring recycling participants, normalized to the number of houses in contiguous blocks and the number of participating households. Comparison of observations to model outputs showed that recycling households were more clustered than for randomly-modelled distributions in relatively few cases. Positive clustering effects were more common for contiguous cul-de-sac blocks than for linearly-oriented blocks of similar size. Clustering also diminished as numbers of houses in linear contiguous blocks increased. The study concluded that the potential for enhancing kerbside recycling by invoking social interactions and norms may be limited due to (1) the low frequency of social interactions between householders and (2) the influence of street architecture on social interactions.

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e-pub ahead of print date: 21 December 2007
Published date: March 2008
Keywords: household waste, kerbside recycling, nearest neighbours, social impact
Organisations: Civil Engineering & the Environment


Local EPrints ID: 52646
ISSN: 0921-3449
PURE UUID: 50d9941a-e2f0-4887-b6d9-49449b2af081

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 11 Jul 2008
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 14:40

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