An Action Research Study for Elaborating and Implementing an Electronic Waste Collection Program in Brazil

Abstract

The objective of this study was to conduct Action Research (AR) to create and implement a WEEE management program that was in line with the BNPSW regulations. The city chosen for this study was São João del Rei (SJDR) located in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil. Using AR it was possible to structure a WEEE management program that involved stakeholders from the city administration, the Federal University of São João del Rei, and representatives from the private sector. The program ultimately collected 1710 kg of WEEE that received an environmentally appropriate destination. Although no major difficulties were observed with respect to the AR process itself, some challenges were encountered. Lack of infrastructure and hesitance on behalf of the public with respect to implementing WEEE Reverse Logistics were complicating factors. The action research as methodology proved to be highly efficient in dealing with e-waste reverse logistics. It resulted in faster decision making, in turn generating better results. Good decisions were repeated and errors were corrected. The Action Research project highlighted the need for raising public awareness about WEEE disposal. It also showed that the public was ultimately interested in participating and contributing to the proposed WEEE management program. The awareness of the population has led to a significant increase in the amount of collected waste. The model resulting from this research serve as a reference for decision makers in implementing similar programs around the world and to contribute to the existing body of knowledge on the subject.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6

References

  1. Araújo MG, Magrini A, Mahler CF, Bilitewski B (2012) A model for estimation of potential generation of waste electrical and electronic equipment in Brazil. Waste Manag 32:335–342. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wasman.2011.09.020

    Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Ayvaz B, Bolat B, Aydın N (2015) Stochastic reverse logistics network design for waste of electrical and electronic equipment. Res Conserv Recycl. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.resconrec.2015.07.006

  3. Babu BR, Parande AK, Basha CA (2007) Electrical and electronic waste: a global environmental problem. Waste Manag Res 25:307–318. https://doi.org/10.1177/0734242X07076941

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Bernardo M, da Silva LR (2017) Using action research to implement selective waste collection program in a Brazilian City. Syst Pract Action Res 30:593–608. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11213-017-9416-9

    Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Bhatnagar VR (2017) Systemic development of leadership: action research in an Indian manufacturing organization. Syst Pract Action Res 30:339–376. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11213-016-9398-z

    Article  Google Scholar 

  6. Brazil (2010) Law no. 12,305, of August 2, 2010. Establishes the National Policy for solid waste and provides other requirements. Casa Civil. http://www.planalto.gov.br/ccivil_03/_ato2007-2010/2010/lei/l12305.htm. Accessed 11 June 2018

  7. Cardoso G, Neto DO, De Jesus A et al (2017) Resources, conservation & recycling economic and environmental assessment of recycling and reuse of electronic waste: multiple case studies in Brazil and Switzerland. Resour Conserv Recycl 127:42–55. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.resconrec.2017.08.011

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Cullen J, Tsamenyi M, Bernon M, Gorst J (2013) Reverse logistics in the UK retail sector: a case study of the role of management accounting in driving organisational change. Manag Account Res 24:212–227. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mar.2013.01.002

    Article  Google Scholar 

  9. de Oliveira CR, Bernardes AM, Gerbase AE (2012) Collection and recycling of electronic scrap: a worldwide overview and comparison with the Brazilian situation. Waste Manag 32:1592–1610. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wasman.2012.04.003

    Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Dias P, Machado A, Huda N, Bernardes AM (2018) Waste electric and electronic equipment (WEEE) management: a study on the Brazilian recycling routes. J Clean Prod 174:7–16. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.10.219

    Article  Google Scholar 

  11. Fagundes LD, Amorim ES, da Silva LR (2017) Action research in reverse logistics for end-of-life Tire recycling. Syst Pract Action Res 30:553–568. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11213-016-9408-1

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. Furtado IS, Rodrigues JTMC (2017) A Gestão dos Resíduos de Equipamentos Eletroeletrônicos no Município de Canoas-RS. VII Congresso Brasileiro de Engenharia de Produção. Aprepro. http://www.aprepro.org.br/conbrepro/2017/anais.php. Accessed 15 June 2018

  13. García-Unanue J, Felipe JL, Gallardo L (2015) Using action research to achieve the implementation of cost accounting: the case of the public sports organizations at local level. Syst Pract Action Res 28:111–123. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11213-014-9322-3

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. Garlapati VK (2016) E-waste in India and developed countries: management, recycling, business and biotechnological initiatives. Renew Sust Energ Rev 54:874–881. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rser.2015.10.106

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. Gil AC (2008) Métodos e técnicas de pesquisa social. Atlas, São Paulo

  16. Govindan K, Kannan D, Mathiyazhagan K (2013) Analysing green supply chain management practices in Brazil’ s electrical/electronics industry using interpretive structural modelling. Int J Environ:37–41. https://doi.org/10.1080/00207233.2013.798494

  17. Hameri AP, Paatela A (2005) Supply network dynamics as a source of new business. Int J Prod Econ 98:41–55. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijpe.2004.09.006

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. Holgersson S, Melin U (2015) Pragmatic dilemmas in action research: doing action research with or without the approval of top management? Syst Pract Action Res 28:1–17. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11213-014-9316-1

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. IBGE (2015) Demographic census 2010. Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics – IBGE. https://www.ibge.gov.br. Accessed 28 March 2018

  20. Kiddee P, Naidu R, Wong MH (2013) Electronic waste management approaches: an overview. Waste Manag 33:1237–1250. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wasman.2013.01.006

    Article  Google Scholar 

  21. Mello CHP, Turrioni JB, Xavier AF, Campos DF (2012) Pesquisa-ação na engenharia de produção: proposta de estruturação para sua condução. Production 22:1–13. https://doi.org/10.1590/S0103-65132011005000056

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. Migliano JE, Demajorovic J, Xavier LH (2014) Shared responsibility and reverse logistics systems for e-waste in Brazil. J Oper Sup Chain Manag 7:91–109

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. Nnorom IC, Osibanjo O (2008) Overview of electronic waste (e-waste) management practices and legislations, and their poor applications in the developing countries. Resour Conserv Recycl 52:843–858. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.resconrec.2008.01.004

    Article  Google Scholar 

  24. Orlins S, Guan D (2016) China’s toxic informal e-waste recycling: local approaches to a global environmental problem. J Clean Prod 114:71–80. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2015.05.090

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. Oteng-Ababio M (2012) When necessity begets ingenuity: E-waste scavenging as a livelihood strategy in Accra, Ghana. African Stud Q 13:1–21

    Google Scholar 

  26. Paes CE, Bernardo M, da Silva LR, Leal F (2017) Management of waste electrical and electronic equipment in Brazilian public education institutions: implementation through action research on a university campus. Syst Pract Action Res 30:377–393. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11213-016-9399-y

    Article  Google Scholar 

  27. Pereira M, Silveira MA (2014) A necessidade de adaptação às regulações ambientais da política nacional de resíduos sólidos: do fabricante ao consumidor organizacional no setor de equipamentos eletromédicos. RAI – Rev Adm e Inovação 11:88–109. doi: https://doi.org/10.11606/rai.v11i4.100274

  28. Qu Y, Zhu Q, Sarkis J et al (2013) A review of developing an e-wastes collection system in Dalian, China. J Clean Prod 52:176–184. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2013.02.013

    Article  Google Scholar 

  29. Silveira MA (2013) Strategic management of innovation towards sustainable development of Brazilian electronics industry. J Technol Manag Innov 8:174–183

    Article  Google Scholar 

  30. Souza RG, Rosenhead J, Salhofer SP et al (2015) Definition of sustainability impact categories based on stakeholder perspectives. J Clean Prod 105:41–51. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2014.09.051

    Article  Google Scholar 

  31. Souza RG, Clímaco JCN, Sant’Anna AP et al (2016) Sustainability assessment and prioritisation of e-waste management options in Brazil. Waste Manag 57:46–56. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wasman.2016.01.034

    Article  Google Scholar 

  32. Sthiannopkao S, Wong MH (2013) Handling e-waste in developed and developing countries: initiatives, practices, and consequences. Sci Total Environ 463–464:1147–1153. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2012.06.088

    Article  Google Scholar 

  33. Townsend TG (2011) Environmental issues and management strategies for waste electronic and electrical equipment. J Air Waste Manage Assoc 61:587–610. https://doi.org/10.3155/1047-3289.61.6.587

    Article  Google Scholar 

  34. Westbrook R (1995) Action research : a new paradigm for research in. Int J Oper Prod Manag 15:6–20. https://doi.org/10.1108/01443579510104466

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgments

The authors would like to thank CAPES, CNPq and FAPEMIG, for their financial support of the projects used to develop this study.

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Roberta Alves.

Additional information

Publisher’s Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Alves, R., Ferreira, K.L.A., Lima, R.d. et al. An Action Research Study for Elaborating and Implementing an Electronic Waste Collection Program in Brazil. Syst Pract Action Res 34, 91–108 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11213-019-09509-5

Download citation

Keywords

  • Waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE)
  • Managing e-waste
  • Reverse logistics
  • Action research