An Engagement-Related Behaviour Change Approach for SavingFood in Greece

  • Carina Veeckman
  • Wim Vanobberghen
  • Eirini Kalemaki
  • Vasia Madesi
  • Alexander Theodoridis
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10750)


Food waste is a global problem that has moved up on the political agenda because of its negative social, environmental and economical impact. To prevent food waste, food banks and food rescue charities are collecting edible surplus food from food donors, and match it with welfare organisations to feed people in need. However, these food redistribution organisations face challenges in terms of efficiency, capacity and scale. This paper presents SavingFood, a EU-funded project that involves several grassroots organisations to tackle these challenges through digital social innovation. SavingFood develops a collective awareness platform for connecting food donors, charities and citizens in a more efficient way, and creating an online community in which actors are motivated to take direct action against food waste. To motivate and engage local communities in the usage of the platform, an engagement-related behaviour change strategy with seven different behavioural change techniques was developed. To inform the strategy, surveys and interviews were conducted to investigate participation barriers and enablers of food redistribution among donors, charities and citizens in Greece. The case study focuses on the volunteer and stakeholder network of the Boroume organisation that collects surplus food all over Greece to feed people in need. The results show that citizens and organisations should be engaged according to their level of volunteering experience, attitudes and beliefs around food waste, and should lead up to tailored communication messages, different participation roles and feedback functions on the platform that re-enforce a pro-social behaviour towards food waste.


Engagement strategy Behavioural change  Food surplus distribution Food waste Digital social innovation 



We sincerely thank all partners of the SavingFood consortium for the support and discussions that helped to develop this publication. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement nr 688221. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Carina Veeckman
    • 1
  • Wim Vanobberghen
    • 1
  • Eirini Kalemaki
    • 2
  • Vasia Madesi
    • 2
  • Alexander Theodoridis
    • 3
  1. 1.imec-SMIT-VUBBrusselsBelgium
  2. 2.ViLabs Technopolis Thessalonikis Business ParkPylaia, ThessalonikiGreece
  3. 3.BoroumeAthensGreece

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