Different pathways to a recycling society – Comparison of the transitions in Austria, Sweden and Finland

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Hanna Salmenperä. Different pathways to a recycling society – Comparison of the transitions in Austria, Sweden and Finland. Journal of Cleaner Production 292 (2021), 125986, ISSN 0959-6526. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2021.125986

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Title: Different pathways to a recycling society – Comparison of the transitions in Austria, Sweden and Finland
Author: Salmenperä, Hanna
Publisher: Elsevier
Date: 2021
Language: en
Belongs to series: Journal of Cleaner Production 292 (2021), 125986
ISSN: 0959-6526
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2021.125986
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/334595
Abstract: The European Union has set strict recycling targets for municipal solid wastes, but the implementation of circularity is still hindered by a variety of present set-ups. This paper addresses the recycling transitions and their complex nature in Austria, Sweden and Finland and points out the differences that are connected to the level of success in recycling. Furthermore, this study identifies present lock-ins in the waste management regime to provide an understanding on the factors preventing further development towards a recycling society. This is done by analysing different waste policy documents and interviews of national waste experts. The study employs the multilevel perspective (MLP) framework that is a commonly used approach in sustainability transitions research. The results highlight the variety of social, political, technical and economic elements, but also the connections between them that result in a stable regime. The pathways to achieve the recycling society differ between Austria, Sweden and Finland. National waste policy, the division of responsibilities, the variety of infrastructure and collection systems in waste management, the level of general awareness, public-private co-operation and the quality of waste data act as key characteristics that reflect the success in the recycling transition. Identified lock-ins for recycling seem to be slightly stronger in Finland compared to Austria and Sweden, while some of the lock-ins are the same in all countries, such as incineration capacity, malfunction of markets of recyclables or lack of product design for recyclability.
Description: Highlights • The pathways to a recycling society differ between Austria, Sweden and Finland. • Pressure for recycling has been explicit in Austria at the landscape level. • There are more identified lock-ins in Finland compared to other countries. • Clear responsibilities, a variety of practices, public awareness and quality of data reflect success. • Bottom-up approaches could be utilised in solving the frictions between public and private actors.
Subject: recycling
municipal wastes
transition
lock-ins
country comparison
MLP
Finland
Sweden
Austria
circular economy
level of success
waste management
waste management regime
waste policy documents
interviews
analysis
national waste experts
multilevel perspective framework
sustainability transition
recycling society
waste data
markets of recyclables
product design for recyclability
Subject (ysa): yhdyskuntajätteet
kierrätys
vertailu
jätteet
Suomi
Itävalta
Ruotsi
kiertotalous
jätehuolto
haastattelut
sisällönanalyysi
asiantuntijat
jätedata
kierrätysyhteiskunta
markkinat
tuotemuotoilu
tuotesuunnittelu
Rights: CC BY 4.0


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