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For years we have been working on innovative ways to re-introduce circularity to cities. Through extensive community research and promotion of new recycling approaches, we found-out that all the answers were already there. There is enough local potential and knowledge on recycling and waste management. Furthermore, there are heaps of private and public actors already working toward more circular systems – and mindsets – to stimulate material reuse.
Despite all this hard work, recycling rates in the Netherlands are still considerably low. The main reason is that only a very limited portion of the urban community separates their waste. Therefore, we face a real challenge, as the most of the urban population still thinks:
We have been working as the mediator of a new social contract, which rewards the act of separating. And after consultations with households, local communities, organisations and business, we introduced the WASTED Reward System that responds to this question. How? Simple:
Since 2015, our system paved the way to a transformative collaborative action, boosting waste separation as an act that deserves appreciation, comprehension and support. We tested the pilot version of the reward system in a couple of Amsterdam Noord neighbourhoods, and as it proved to be successful; WASTED team began collaboration with the Municipality of Amsterdam in order to expand to the whole Noord and beyond.