Public Understandings of E-waste and its Disposal in Urban India: From a Review towards a Conceptual Framework
by Anwesha Borthakur, Madhav Govind, Journal of Cleaner Production, 2017, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.10.218
Highlights: Presented an in-depth review on important E-waste associated concerns. Urban India's intricate E-waste experiences are assessed. Households' electronics purchase and E-waste disposal behaviours are evaluated. A new conceptual framework has been proposed in the context of urban India. The new framework is tested against a primary field study in Bangalore.
Abstract: Responsible management of electronic waste (E-waste) is a major apprehension in contemporary urban India. As a toxic waste stream, E-waste calls for conscientious management practices in order to avoid possible human health and environmental consequences. Publics' consumption, disposal behaviour and awareness/perception are central to any successful E-waste management initiative. This paper is a journey from a review of existing literatures on some significant aspects of E-waste (including some widely used conceptual frameworks for waste management studies) towards a new conceptual framework of 'public understandings of E-waste and its disposal' in urban India. Accordingly, the paper is divided into two parts: 1) In-depth literature review on a few important aspects of E-waste and 2) Review of publics' perceptions of E-waste and the determinants of their consumption and disposal intention with the help of specific theoretical underpinnings. The concluding conceptual framework underlying our work uses elements that stem from the ideas of the theory of planned behaviour (TPB) and conspicuous consumption. Further, a case study carried out in the city of Bangalore is considered to validate the relevance of the new conceptual framework. Thus, the paper is an attempt not to restrict ourselves to the review of the existing literatures alone, but also to test the new conceptual framework formulated through the literature review against a primary field study.
Keywords: E-Waste; Theory of planned behaviour; Conspicuous consumption; Public understandings of E-waste; Urban India