A typology of overinclusive recycling

Anna deBortoli, Luke Greenacre, Erica Brady

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Those who recycle tend to do so with good intentions. However, even good intentions can lead consumers to contaminate recycling through the inclusion of nonrecyclable materials. This contamination can lead to loads of recoverable materials being sent to landfill or for energy recovery. This research proposes and tests vis consumer survey a typology of overinclusive recycling behaviour. Overinclusive recycling is segmented into wish-cycling, know-cycling and arbitrary disposal based on insights from industry and literature. Potential predictors of overinclusive recycling were also identified: environmental concern, recycling knowledge and confidence in one’s waste sorting. Testing supports two of the classification types: wish-cycling (where consumers have low confidence in their waste sorting but are hopeful when placing an item into the recycling that it will be recycled) and know-cycling (where consumers have high confidence in their waste sorting and incorrectly believe material is recyclable).
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2022
EventAustralian and New Zealand Marketing Academy Conference 2022: Reconnect & Reimagine - Perth, Australia
Duration: 5 Dec 20227 Dec 2022


ConferenceAustralian and New Zealand Marketing Academy Conference 2022
Abbreviated titleANZMAC 2022
Internet address


  • waste
  • recycling
  • consumer behavior

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