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News | 08 Mar 2024

Behavioural insights for waste-sorting labels in the European Union

Exciting News from the EU! 

This week, the European Council and European Parliament reached a provisional political agreement on a proposal for regulating packaging and packaging waste.

Why is this important? Because it's a big step towards tackling the increase in packaging waste generated in the EU, while harmonising the internal market for packaging, waste sorting labels and boosting the circular economy.

  • Our latest report - written by Ankinée Kirakozian, Olivier Beaumais, Nathalie Lazaric, Marion Dupoux and Hendrik Bruns - delves into the realm of waste-sorting labels, a vital component of the EU's strategy to boost municipal and packaging recycling rates in the EU.
  • We reviewed behavioural science literature to gain insights into which waste sorting designs are more effective and appreciated. Based on evidence-based recommendations, we want to develop a harmonised labelling system that is not only efficient but also valued by everyone.
  • There are some crucial characteristics of waste-sorting labels that stood out from our study: their presentation, accessibility, quality and content. We derive lessons, insights and recommendations to feed into a participatory and empirical approach to designing EU harmonised waste-sorting labels.

Read the full report here.

There is much more to come this year, including a report together with colleagues from the EU Policy Lab design team setting the conceptual and empirical scene for harmonised waste sorting labels in the EU.