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Green nudging - A key against littering? Behavioral economic measures for cleaner cities

Jennifer Potthoff

No 10/2023, IW policy papers from Institut der deutschen Wirtschaft (IW) / German Economic Institute

Abstract: The demand for cleanliness in cities is increasing: "Littering" - the illegal littering of public spaces - does not only cause costs for the environment and society, but also has significant financial consequences through increased cleaning costs. Much of the littering consists of "to-go" packaging, plastic bottles, and cigarette butts. Currently, the problem is predominantly addressed with laws, fines, and education campaigns. Politicians and the media are also putting the appearance of cities on the agenda, but classic instruments such as controls by municipal law enforcement officers and harsh sanctions against "litterers" are reaching their limits in solving the problem. In addition to classic environmental policy instruments, the tools of behavioral economics can make a complementary contribution in solving the problem: by influencing people's daily habits, green nudges can encourage people to reduce littering, thereby improving urban cleanliness.

JEL-codes: D91 H00 H23 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2023
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-env and nep-nud
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