Sorting waste in apartment buildings: facts and possibilities
Paper in proceedings, 2013

Waste handling is a major challenge in today’s society. The amount of waste is increasing despite numerous, waste-system related improvements. In other domains of interest for sustainable development, researchers have recently started to investigate the user’s role instead of keeping a systems perspective that excludes the human factors. To investigate the use of existing waste-sorting infrastructure available at apartment buildings, this paper reports on a case study carried out in two buildings in Gothenburg/Sweden. Results from the study reveal mismatches between user needs and what the system offers. The aim was to identify a strategy that housing companies could take to allow for more effective sorting of household waste in rental housing areas, with special focus on the biodegradable fraction. The resulting strategy consists of practical solutions that can be implemented by housing companies with similar conditions.

waste sorting

waste composition studies

design for sustainability


Isabel Ordonez Pizarro

Chalmers, Product and Production Development, Design and Human Factors

Mistra Urban Futures

University of Gothenburg

Robin Harder

Mistra Urban Futures

University of Gothenburg

Chalmers, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Water Environment Technology

Ulrike Rahe

Mistra Urban Futures

Chalmers, Product and Production Development, Design and Human Factors

University of Gothenburg

Proceedings of the ERSCP-EMSU 2013 conference, 16th Conference of the European Roundtable on Sustainable Consumption and Production (ERSCP) & 7th Conference of the Environmental Management for Sustainable Universities (EMSU), 4 – 7 June 2013, Istanbul, Turkey.

Subject Categories

Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics


Driving Forces

Sustainable development

More information