Beyond 70%: Assessing Alternative Waste Management Opportunities for Institutions
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Initial investigations into the waste management practices at Dalhousie University revealed opportunities for more effective and efficient management of the four major waste streams. However, there was no comprehensive framework in place to properly evaluate which of these opportunities is most appropriate. Neither was there a model system in use at other institutions that could be easily applied to the Dalhousie context. The purpose of this research was to address this issue and, in doing so, to provide a framework for Dalhousie University for facilitating the selection of stakeholder-inclusive waste management options. The study applies a multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA)/weighted sum model (WSM) framework to waste management decision-making within an institutional setting. Interviews and focus groups were conducted with key stakeholders selected based on their knowledge and experience in waste management, as well their position or role. The knowledge and expertise from the stakeholders was elicited and used to inform the development of twelve evaluation criteria for assessing three waste management options, as well as the weightings used in the analysis. The outcome of this research demonstrates a novel approach for implementing a framework that other organizations and institutions can apply to facilitate the selection of waste management options.