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From waste management to waste prevention

Closing implementation gaps through sustainable action nets
This project deals with the principle formulated by the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency that sustainable waste policy should be oriented toward waste prevention and not only waste management. National authorities can steer through decisions and legislation, and introduce incitements and control mechanisms. But practical responsibility for a sustainable waste reduction is given to a non coordinated mix of local actors.

The aim of this research project is to identify and explain gaps between planning and implementation for sustainable development based on the case of waste prevention. Waste prevention illustrates the gaps that tend to appear between plans and outcomes when local authorities implement a national policy in collaboration with actors (corporations, associations,citizens) with diverging interests and priorities. Providing a theoretical understanding of implementation gaps is necessary if planning is to be effective.

The project combines action net theory and sociological new institutionalism to show that planning can be conceptualized as the envisioning of actions aimed at building new nets of relations among actors and stabilizing these relations into action nets that stand for new behaviors.

The project rests on case studies and a series of interactive workshops where actors involved in waste prevention and researchers gather to identify obstacles to plan for waste prevention in order to better prevent gaps between planning and implementation.


Budget: 7,9 MSek, about 910 000 Euros

Period: 2014-2017


Final report available here







Hervé Corvellec

Professor Hervé Corvellec
Institutionen för service management och tjänstevetenskap
Lunds universitet

Epost: herve [dot] corvellec [at] ism [dot] lu [dot] se
Tel: 042 356 603, 0730 31 99 04


Patrik Zapata

Professor Patrik Zapata
Göteborgs Universitet

Epost: patrik [dot] zapata [at] spa [dot] gu [dot] se
Tel: 031 786 1611

Institutionen för service management och tjänstevetenskap
Lunds universitet | Campus Helsingborg
Besök: Universitetsplatsen 2 Helsingborg
Postadress: Box 882, 251 08 Helsingborg
 042-35 66 20
E-post: info [at] ism [dot] lu [dot] se

Samhällsvetenskapliga fakulteten | Campus Helsingborg