Urban Recycling

Aim: To provide research and insight of the peoples view on waste, recycling and resources – particularly in Urban areas of England. Also a chance to codesign and collaborate with the general public on action plans and solutions to boost England’s Urban Recycling.

Summary: The Urban Recycling Inquiry took place in spring 2014 and was launched in September 2014. It  took the form of a Citizens Jury,  a collaboration between Keep Britain Tidy, SITA UK and social research agency BritainThinks, experts in this form of deliberative research. The research was over 2 days and repeated in the North (Manchester) and South of England (Lewisham). The 1st day looked at initial feelings and understandings towards recycling and then built on these through presentations and discussions. Following this the 2nd day included representatives from local and national government, business, resources sector and community organisations to support the discussions and action planning to boost urban Englands stalling recycling rates. Following the workshops  a representative poll across England was undertaken to compare, support the findings.

The full report can be found at The Ur[bin] Issue: Working with communities to improve urban recycling

Outcome: Both the research and approach has generated a lot of interest and helped to shape Keep Britain Tidy’s and SITA UK narrative and responses towards urban recycling in England. It has also been covered across sector media, recently officially launched at a venue near parliament square in central London and presented at the RWM conference. Insights and recommendations from the research were used for both written and oral submissions to the EFRA Circular Economy inquiry and EAC Waste Management.

In terms of insights three overarching elements emerged to help improve recycling: Engagement, Motivation  and Infrastructure. Alongside these a clear 10-point action plan, based on the jurors’ actions plans aimed at a range of stakeholders in the recycling process – including government, industry, retailers and educators, to improve urban recycling performance across England.

Role: While Design and Evidence manager at Keep Britain Tidy I was the lead project manager in both developing the research in collaboration with  SITA UK and BritainThinks and in its execution and final report write up.