12 Oct 2009; Arriving at congress center in Lisbon
A view to Padrao dos Descobrimentos (modern monument dedicatec to the Portuguese maritime discoveries) from cenro cultural de Belem in Lisbon
 

13 Oct 2009; Presentation at ISWA 2009
 Check the attachement 1 for the presentation file
 

15 Oct 2009; Technical tour to hazardous waste treatment sites in Camushca region in central Portugal
Two companies visited which were established in 2008 to treat all hazardous waste generated in Portugal expect radioactive, explosive and clinical waste.
 

Landfil site is seen behind us                        Courtesy Ecodeal, Portugal

 Delegates at Ecodeal                                Courtesy Ecodeal, Portugal

      
 
  
Stakeholders' analysis, a key tool in feasibility study of waste management projects
 
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

 

Environmental aspects of human activities have been intentioned more in recent years and increasing consumption and ever increasing amount of waste have great impacts on this matter (2007b). Due to this fact, sustainable waste treatments have been developed and waste minimization and consumption reduction are considered as the most sustainable solutions. These methods are focused on preserving environment as the core issue. Waste management system as the whole process of collecting, processing and controlled waste disposal covers all above approaches.

 

Despite of many efforts and investment in waste management systems, the effectiveness of these systems are not satisfying. Amount of landfill as a main indicator for effectiveness of waste management systems as well as environmental impact is still high. The amount of 50% (and more) landfill can be seen worldwide as the main solution for municipality waste. This problem is a worldwide issue and can be seen not only in developing countries but also in developed countries. It shall be added that large numbers of communities have no sanitary and controlled landfill yet. Although, EU landfill directive forces members to reduce their landfill to 35% of amount at 1995 by 2016 (2007b), but there is a wide difference between members, for example more than 80% landfill in Northern Ireland compare to less than 6% in Borås (2007b). Moreover to landfill amount, the cost of waste treatments methods and resources required such as training and awareness as well as the time consumed for implementation is varied from one city to another city for similar projects and methods.

 

This paper is part of a academic research about quality perspective into waste management systems which discuss about application of stakeholders’ analysis as a tool for increasing the effectiveness of waste management systems. This tool has been applied by some researchers in analysis of service sectors including municipal and industrials waste management systems (1995, 1999, 2000, 2004c, 2006, 2007a, 2009b).

 

The reasons for different results and time consumed in similar projects in Mashhad - as a pioneer city in implementing new waste treatment methods in Iran- and Borås - as one of the best cities in waste management among Swedish municipalities- as well as the relative ineffectiveness of activities in Mashhad has been analyzed. Stakeholders’ analysis has been conducted in Mashhad waste management system and results have been compared with similar system in Borås. Public information provided by responsible organization for waste management plus interviews with responsible managers, experiences of living in the mentioned cities and scatter data, news and reports has been used within this research. Comparison of stakeholders’ power and importance in Mashhad and Borås has been used for analyzing of different results at similar projects and activities.

 

This research highlights the importance of identification of all stakeholders and their needs, consideration and integrating their legitimate needs into planning of waste management projects. Comparison of stakeholders in Borås and Mashhad shows the effects of stakeholders specially those who have not been considered in effectiveness of similar waste management projects. These results also confirm importance of stakeholders’ analysis and its application prior or during planning of future projects specially those projects which are bench marked from other cities.

 

INTRODUCTION

 

Background

 

Mashhad is the second populated city (2.4 million inhabitants, 2008) in Iran which produces 1700 tons of waste daily (2009c, d). Fluctuation in waste volume is the main characteristics of waste management system in Mashhad. Due to large number of pilgrims and tourist in national and public holidays, this amount increases up to 2400 tons/day (2009c, d).

 

Recycling organization of Mashhad municipality (hereafter as ROOMM) has been established on 1996 with goal of collecting, sanitary disposal and treatment of waste by establishing a composting factory which diverts 300 tons/day of degradable waste into compost (2009c). Main part of solid waste including recyclable waste has been collecting by large number of waste collectors since decades before. There is no confirmed information about number of these waste collectors.

 

ROOMM has implemented and developed several projects such as establishing special recycling factories for PET, paper, and plastic waste during 2003 to 2009, the first biogas power plant in Iran at 2009 and Sulphur enriched granule compost factory at 2009. This organization also started household waste sorting from origin since 1999. At 2008, ROOMM has sent about 70% of waste into the old landfill site located 5 Km from the city and new landfill site which is 50 Km far from the city. Biogas power plant burns methane gas collected from the old landfill site. The emitted gas was burned into the air since some years ago (2009c).

 

Borås in South West of Sweden have 100,000 inhabitants which make it as the 13th most populated city in Sweden. Attempt for waste management in Borås has started at the end of 80’s decade by training households to sort their waste. Since 1992, city hall has operated the first waste treatment plant which has treated 174,000 tons of waste at 2005. There is also a main site for incineration (Borås energy och miljö AB) which provides distance heating and cooling as well as electricity for houses, offices and industries in Borås municipality (2007b). There are also centers for collecting and treating households’ staffs and unused articles as well as hazardous waste which are sent to other cities for treatment. Waste treatment processes in Borås are included of incineration, composting, biogas production, as well as recycling. Borås municipality has land filled less than 6% of its total waste at 2005 (2007b, 2008d), which ranks it as one the best performances in Europe.

 

Among all similarities and differences in waste management systems in Mashhad and Borås, there are some similar projects which show different results and implementation time. Table 1 list a short timeline of activities in Mashhad and Borås.

 

 

Table 1 of timeline of waste management in Borås and Mashhad

 

Borås (2007b), (2008d)

Mashhad (2009c)

Late 80 s

Sorting of household waste in small scale

 

1991

Landfill as high as 75%

 

1992

First waste treatment plant

 

1994

Sorting from origin covers whole city

 

1995

First Biogas reactor - shut down later

 

1996

 

Establishment of ROOMM – Composting factory

1997

Landfill reduced to 10%

 

1999

 

Sorting from origin started in small scale

2005

Second biogas plant started working

 

2006

Landfill reduced to 6%

Paper, PET & Plastic recycling factory

2007

 

Burning methane gas at landfill area

2008

Landfill reduced to 4%

New landfill site

2009

 

Biogas power plant - Granule compost factory

2009

Landfill <6%

Sorting from origin about 100%

Landfills 50-70%

Sorting from origin > 6%

 

Table 1 shows at least three major differences in waste management system in Mashhad and Borås which are: Different views about the importance of training in projects; Ineffectiveness of sorting from origin in Mashhad; and different amount of landfill in Mashhad and Borås.

 

Process Map

 

Figure 1 illustrates main processes (product realization) in Mashhad waste management system. Solid lines represent those activities which are managed by ROOMM since dashed lines are managed or executed by traditional system or unknown methods. It can be understood from the mentioned process map that, there are unorganized activities in all groups. There is no confirmed information about the volume of waste treatment and disposal beside the ROOMM borders.

 

Figure 1 of process map for main processes in Mashhad waste management system (see the PDF file)

 

A main group of activities are conducted by traditional waste collectors who are active many years before establishment of ROOMM. Traditional waste collectors are newly called “waste finders” disturb the system by buying solid waste from citizens and even ROOMM employees, or they steal solid waste from waste boxes before arriving the special truck for collecting (2009d). Another group is including those industries, citizens and shops which are interested to deliver waste to ROOMM, but they are not covered by the system due to different reasons such as lack of resources or conflict in municipality laws. This group has their own waste treatment method which is mainly non standard disposal. The third group is including those who have their own waste treatment system such as hospitals, special industries and agricultural system. There is also a wide group of waste which is not processed under controlled conditions including some hazardous waste such as batteries, lamps and electronic wastes. New facility has been established for storing electronic devices but there is no treatment predicted.

 

Uncovered activities by ROOMM as well as high amount of landfill highlight several opportunities for new projects in Mashhad, but success in new project is mainly dependent to understanding the present situation.

 

Stakeholders’ Analysis

 

Stakeholders’ analysis has been used as a management tool since last decade (2004a) and represents the process of identification and mapping all individual, organizations and factors which are affecting on or affecting by the system. This process is including identification of stakeholders’ needs and integrating or consideration of their needs and expectations into strategies of the organization or the system.

 

There are different approaches into identification of stakeholders. Some researchers believing, stakeholders shall be considered based on their power and its effect on the system such as Eden and Ackerman (2004a), but some other believing to identification of broader range of stakeholders regardless their power such as Nutt and Backoff (2004a). Stefan Book represents a group of stakeholders in addition to powerless stakeholders, as “silent stakeholders” such as environment, laws and culture and suggests considering them into analysis. Stakeholders’ analysis typically consisted of the following steps: Identify stakeholders (Brainstorming; Understand stakeholder needs and interests; Classify them into meaningful groups; Compare or Stakeholder Mapping; Prioritize, balance, reconcile or synthesize the stakeholders; Integrate stakeholder needs into the strategies of the organization and into its actions (2009a).

 

Identification of stakeholders in Mashhad waste management system has carried out by reviewing different source of information and brainstorming on the system to find all stakeholders including those referred to “silent stakeholders” as Stefan Book. Table 2 shows a list of stakeholders in Mashhad waste management system. The table also lists stakeholders groups and basic needs of each stakeholder. General terms used as stakeholders’ needs have different meaning for each stakeholder, but during the step for integrating the needs into strategies shall be deployed into specific terms.

 

Table 2 of stakeholder list and their needs in Mashhad waste management system

Group

Stakeholders

Needs

Service Users

Citizens

Cleanliness

Ease

No noise

Low Cost

Tourists

Cleanliness

Comfortable

 

 

Small Businesses

Cleanliness

Comfortable

No Conflict

Low Cost

Industries as Waste Producer

No Conflict

Low Cost

Availability

 

Agricultural Systems

No Conflict

Low Cost

Availability

Less Impact

Shops

Cleanliness

Comfortable

No Conflict

Low Cost

Employees, Suppliers, Other Involved

Share Holder

Profit

Sustainability

 

 

White Collar Employees

Income

Sustainability

Hygiene

 

Blue Collar Employees

Income

Sustainability

Hygiene

 

Suppliers

Income

Collaboration

Sustainability

Hygiene

Recycling, Processing Co.

Sustainability

Market

Profit

Availability

Product Users

Low Cost

Hygiene

Quality

Availability

Traditional Waste Recycler

Profit

Safety

Sustainability

No Conflict

Neighbors

Good View

No Emission

Less Impact

 

Environment

Environment

Less Impact

Sustainability

 

 

Land

Less Impact

Sustainability

 

 

Sub Surface Water Resources

Less Impact

Sustainability

 

 

Urban Environment

Beautifulness

Less Impact

 

 

Wild Life

Sustainability

Less Impact

 

 

Global Environment

Less Impact

Sustainability

 

 

Weather

Less Impact

Sustainability

Low Emission

 

Law Makers and Supervisors

Government Authorities

Obeying Rule

Collaboration

Less Impact

Sustainability

Environ. Protection Organization

Collaboration

Less Impact

Sustainability

 

Legislation Organization

Collaboration

Transparency

Sustainability

 

Religious Institution

Collaboration

Transparency

Obeying Rule

 

Public Health Care

Obeying Rule

Information

Transparency

Collaboration

Scientific Centers and Int.  Org.

Academic Centers

Collaboration

Information

Transparency

 

Int. Protocols

Collaboration

Transparency

Information

 

Int. Organizations

Collaboration

Transparency

Information

 

NGO, Individual Activists

Transparency

Information

Sustainability

 

Finance System

Citizens (Tax Payers)

Efficiency

Effectiveness

Transparency

 

Banks

Transparency

Efficiency

Collaboration

Sustainability

Tax Organization

Transparency

Efficiency

Collaboration

 

Investor

Transparency

Efficiency

Profit

Sustainability

Other

Religious Cost. and Culture

Obeying Rule

Sustainability

No Conflict

Less Impact

Media

Collaboration

Information

Supporting

 

Children and Next Generation

Cleanliness

Sustainability

Less Impact

 

Local Traffic

Less Traffic

Less Impact

 

 

Urban City Planners

Collaboration

Effectiveness

Sustainability

Obeying Rule

Other Product Developers

Collaboration

No Conflict

 

 

Transportation, Derivers

No Conflict

Sustainability

 

 

 

Stakeholders’ Mapping

 

Interest/ power matrix has been proposed by Gardner et al (2004a) and describes the general model for stakeholders mapping. Each stakeholder is classified based on their interest as well as their power to waste management system. This model gives basic information about the situation of stakeholders in waste management system.

 

Table 3 represents interest/ power matrix for waste management system in Mashhad based on stakeholders’ list in table 2 and process map in figure 1. Information supporting the matrix content has been gained through various methods such as public information provided by ROOMM, interview with stakeholders involved and other sources. Black color stakeholders are those which has been considered in waste management system, compare to blue color stakeholders which have not been considered fully and red one which have been neglected. Table 3 basically shows that consideration of stakeholders into waste management system in Mashhad is based on stakeholders’ power and stakeholders with low power has not been considered fully even though they showed high interest to waste management system in Mashhad.

 

Table 3 of power/ interest model for stakeholders in Mashhad waste management system

 

Low interest

High interest

Low power

Minimal Effort

Derivers

Citizens (Tax Payers)

Tourists

Agricultural Systems

Children and Next Generation

Small Businesses, Shops

Local Traffic

Keep Informed

Citizens

Product Users

Blue Collar Employees

Traditional Waste Recycler

Environment

Sub Surface Water Resources, Urban Environment, Wild Life, Global Environment, Weather, Soil

NGO s, World bank

Universities and Scientific Centres

Int. Organizations and Protocols

Urban City Planners

Service Suppliers

High power

Keep Satisfied

Religious Costumes

Legislation Organization

Media

Religious Institution

Banks and Financing Organizations

Industries as Waste Producer

Key Players

Share Holder

White Collar Employees, Office Employees at ROOMM

Supervising Organization, Government and Governmental Authorities

Environ. Protection Organization

Public Health Care

Local Traffic

Recycling, Processing Companies

Neighbours

Society

 

Discussion

 

Analysis of power / interest matrix (table 3) and process map (figure 1) highlights some dependencies with important aspects in Mashhad waste management timelines (table 1)

 

Mashhad and Borås have followed different approaches in training of household for sorting from origin. Whereas Borås has started the training some years before establishing the first treatment plant (2007b), Mashhad has started this activity about 3 years after establishment of ROOMM (2009c). Although there are many reasons for this approach such as short term planning for ROOMM, but the root cause of all potential reasons goes back to neglecting or underestimation of citizens and their role in waste management system. This problem has been understood by ROOMM and all groups of citizens including households, school students and tourists are trained by different methods and approaches.

 

Although the training of households have been started with delay in Mashhad but the project covers only 6% of collected waste (2009d). In addition to seasonal increase in amount of waste due to tourist, there are other reasons for ineffectiveness of the project. Traditional waste collectors steal or buy recyclable waste from citizens before arriving ROOMM’s vehicles to collecting them. When reviewing the power/ interest matrix, it is easy to understand that this group of stakeholder and their needs have not been considered in ROOMM strategies. Review of ROOMM actions and strategies reveals that traditional waste collectors (or “waste finders” as ROOMM) are considered as disturbing factors which shall be deleted from the system or shall be organized under ROOMM supervision. All efforts for removing or organizing waste finders have not been successful and ROOMM is competing with them all the time (2009d). Due to lack of interaction and group problem solving with urban city planners, no solution has been proposed by urban planners and architects for sorting from origin, something like waste shooting systems, locked waste boxes and waste pipes in Borås. Power/ interest matrix in table 3 shows weak interaction between city planners and traditional waste collectors as highly interested stakeholders.

 

Another important aspect of waste management system in Mashhad is high amount of landfill compare to Borås. Again, table 3 shows that environment has not been considered as a main stakeholder, even though environment protection organization has been considered as a main stakeholders and ROOMM have a close collaboration with this organization (2009d). There are no national or regional laws or instructions at environment protection organization regarding reduction in landfill, setting targets or deadlines for landfills or any limitation for biodegradable waste (2009e). Compare to Mashhad waste management system; Borås goes beyond national laws and EU landfill (2007b) directives which forces their members to limit diverting waste into landfill by measurable targets.   

 

Table 4 lists visions for Borås and Mashhad as well as some key performance indicators. Whereas the waste management system in Borås has SMART indicators and measurements clearly consider environment; indicators and measurements in Mashhad focus on the system efficiency. These types of measurements and indicators show that environment have not been considered by waste management system in Mashhad. Although waste management system in Mashhad may has gone beyond requirements of environment protection organization.

 

Table 4 of visions and indicators in Mashhad and Borås waste management system (2009c)

Mashhad

Borås

Vision

Preserving the environment

Job creation

Supporting the national economy

The city without need to fusil fuel

Indicators and measurements

Number of trucks used for waste collecting

Volume of waste collected and treated

Percentage of sorting from origin

Emission to air

Analysis of emitted gas

Amount of landfill

Share of biological treatment

 

Figure 2 and 3 are illustrating stakeholders’ power and importance in Mashhad and Borås waste management systems based on a ranking approach (1 to 4). These two models are showing the different patterns for stakeholders in Mashhad and Borås. Without consideration of the method for ranking the stakeholders in two mentioned systems, they show significant differences between stakeholders’ power and importance in Mashhad and Boars.

 

Whereas international protocols and organizations have strong power in waste management system in Borås, they have very low power to affect on waste management system in Mashhad. This difference can be traced in actions in both cities, for example Borås system is reporting their efforts for reducing the total carbon dioxide emission not only in Borås, but also in different countries. But there is only one report about burning methane gas emitted from landfill site in Mashhad to decrease the green house effect of methane. This action is not reflected in strategic plans, measurements and indicators.

 

Another considerable difference could be seen for investors and banks in Mashhad which hold higher power due to their types (mostly governmental) and the weak role of private sector in investing in waste treatment methods. This is important for those projects which need powerful investors or financing.

 

Another difference also can be traced for official employees in Mashhad and Borås. Official employees in Mashhad affect on the system through holding more authority for policy making, target setting and suppliers’ control, since these power in Sweden comes from top level law makers and municipalities, and high level collaboration between academic and research centers.

 

Figure 2 of graph for stakeholders’ power in Mashhad (Blue) and Borås (see the PDF file)

 

Similar pattern can be seen for stakeholders’ importance. Due to tax laws in Sweden, importance of tax payers as well as subscribers who pays charges for waste management in Borås is higher than Mashhad. Although the waste collecting process consumes 30 million USD in Mashhad, there is no clear relation between tax payers and cost of waste management system. The proposal for receiving 10% of annual municipality tax for waste management was rejected by Iranian parliament (2009d).

 

Another significant difference in importance graph comes from religious institution and costumes. The importance of religious stakeholders in Mashhad is so high that they can stop methods conflicting with basic religious rules in Islam, for example the location of landfill area, mixing of food residue and other waste, type of treatment for residue of animal in poultry industry such as blood and method for inhalation of vagrant dogs. The similar situation does not exist in Borås.

 

Figure 3 of graph for stakeholders’ importance in Mashhad (Blue) and Borås (see the PDF file)

 

CONCOLUSION

 

Review of activities during the implementation and development of waste management system in Mashhad as well as application of stakeholders’ analysis to finding the reason for ineffective projects in Mashhad shows strong dependency between ineffectiveness of the projects and poor stakeholders’ analysis. All ineffective projects show that whenever the involved stakeholders have not been identified or their needs have not been considered in planning, the project has consumed more time and has given insufficient result. Comparison of similar project in Mashhad and Borås confirm this claim such as those where waste management system has considered all potential stakeholders.

 

Sustainable waste management systems are environmental oriented systems. Due to this fact, environment with all dimensions (weather, water, wild life and so on) and all levels (urban, local, national and global) shall be considered as independent stakeholders, although NGO’s and environmental organizations may act as powerful stakeholders. Neglecting the environment in Mashhad has reduced the importance of more sustainable waste treatment methods instead of landfill.

 

Providing a clear frame for target setting based on real needs is the main advantage of stakeholders’ analysis which brings up all involved stakeholders with an understandable level of importance. Application of this tool helps policy makers to ensure that all legitimate needs has been considered in waste management projects and set SMART targets which cover all stakeholders’ requirements and expectations.

 

Stakeholders’ analysis ensures planners whether all relevant factors have been identified. This advantage comes from classification of all information including data and scatter news during stakeholders’ analysis. Stakeholders’ analysis provides an easy to understand frame for gathering, classification and analysis of scatter data and news which are neglected basically in scientific case studies and feasibility studies but they may affect on the project during its implementation and development. In addition the output can be linked to risk assessment as verified inputs.

 

Stakeholders’ analysis facilitate comparing and ranking of all parameters in a contest. Power, importance, legitimacy, urgency, or any other dimensions of stakeholders can be easily ranked and compared with each other. The common steps during stakeholders’ analysis which are based on brain storming in different levels of involved people ensuring that overestimation or underestimation has not been happened. This advantage can be used in bench marking of successful project for implementation in different area.

 

This tool facilitates the identification of possible actions for diverting threads to opportunities. The use of this tool highlights the role of each stakeholder in the system and make easy to identify opportunities to use their power for the system performance. Evaluation of all stakeholders in a unique contest makes it more effective.

 

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

 

Authors thank all managers and employees in recycling organization of Mashhad municipality and Borås energy och miljö AB which provided information and materials for preparing this article. Authors also thank the department of industrial engineering at University of Borås for supporting this research

 

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Ċ
Hamidreza Soleimanpour,
Oct 19, 2009, 3:17 PM
Ċ
Hamidreza Soleimanpour,
Oct 19, 2009, 3:12 PM