On 25 June, the day before the Warsaw conference, the COLLECTORS project partners gathered in the Polish capital to take part in a decision-making exercise under the umbrella of the Regional Working Group (RWG). They were also joined by nine experts representing different European regions.
Comprising local and regional authorities and COLLECTORS partners, the RWG functions as a forum that validates the project’s activities, tools, and outcomes in order to ensure that they reflect the complex social and social reality in which waste systems operate. The Warsaw meeting was the third out of four RWG meetings scheduled to take place throughout the project.
The exercise was organised around a fictive case study, the aim of which was to select a preferred waste collection strategy for a European region. The fictive case region needed to improve its performance in waste collection and increase capture rates for all packaging waste streams. The case study exercise was built based on data selected from the COLLECTORS database and the 12 case studies prepared by the project partners.
During the day, the experts discussed the specific characteristics of the case region and devised proposals for improving the waste collection system. Multi-criteria decision making (MCDM) was applied for collecting and merging expert opinions in a structured way and for selecting the preferred waste collection strategy. During the discussions, participants looked at potential options for improving the collection system and increasing stakeholder participation.
Additionally, they discussed the necessary data and criteria related to describing the performance of a waste collection system, as well as the availability and importance of environmental, economic and social data and the specific needs related to decision-making. The findings from the workshop indicated that the number of criteria that can be effectively included in decision-making is limited. However, the availability of comprehensive background information describing the relevant economic, environmental, social and technical aspects related to the systems and their impacts was deemed to be useful.
The conclusions from the workshop will be reported in detail in an upcoming project report (3.4), which will summarise the findings of the different workshops carried out throughout the project. It will also provide recommendations about the utility and potential of MCDM methods in supporting decision-making related to waste collection systems.