Towards a circular economy in South Africa:
what are the constraints to recycling mobile phones?
Click this link to download Peter Desmond’s 35-page research report
There are limited amounts of non-renewable resources which we are using to make everyday products. In addition, developments in electronic devices have resulted in increasing amounts of waste.
This paper identifies, in the context of recycling mobile phones (cellphones) in South Africa, the constraints which inhibit progress towards the creation of a circular economy where waste is considered a resource.
Published literature and semi-structured interviews are used to identify these constraints and examples proposed of how the constraints can be overcome through changes to legislation, policy, infrastructure, financial incentives and consumer behaviour. Such changes will require all key stakeholders to work in collaboration to recover the valuable resources and reduce waste.
Chapter 1 – Introduction
1.1 The Problem
1.2 Linear and Circular Economies
1.3 Research Question
1.4 Mobile Phones
1.5 South Africa
1.6 Relevance to International Development
1.7 Structure of the paper
Chapter 2 – Definition of Terms
2.1 Linear Economy
2.2 Circular Economy
Chapter 3 – Methodology
3.1 Secondary Sources
3.2 Primary Resources
3.3 Framework for Analysis of Constraints
Chapter 4 – Constraints Identified in the Literature Review
Chapter 5 – Constraints Identified in the Primary Research Interviews
Chapter 6 – Overcoming Constraints
Chapter 7 – Conclusion
Appendix I – Questions Asked in Research Interviews