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The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH GIZ project “Climate Sensitive Waste Management (DKTI)” from Serbia was awarded the second prize of the International Solid Waste Association (ISWA) Publication Award for the “Inclusion of Informal Collectors into the Evolving Waste Management System in Serbia” study.

Having won the second prize given that the first prize was awarded to Mr. Ad Lansink, the creator of the Ladder of Lansink waste hierarchy for the book “Challenging Changes, Connecting Waste Hierarchy and Circular Economy” apart from being a great honor it also gives additional weight to this prestigious recognition from peers in the waste management world.

The Inclusion study presents comprehensive research of the current position of the informal collectors in Serbia. For the first time such research was conducted encompassing and analyzing three different aspects – technical, social, economic and organizational integration of collectors to get a more profound understanding of the challenges to finding solutions. Three topic specific research teams, which gathered professionals in respective fields, conducted a yearlong research in dozen municipalities in Serbia focusing on different aspects of activities of primarily Roma men and women in the informal sector – true heroes of recycling in Serbia who are contributing most of 80% of the country’s total recycling activity, estimated at between 10% and 30% of waste generated.

Mr. Antonis Mavropoulos, ISWA President presents the award to Mrs. Marija Bogdanovic Deputy Team Leader of the “Climate Sensitive Waste Management (DKTI)”

Through innovative research methodology which included direct in-depth interviews with the informal collectors, the focus of the research is on their relationships with national and local authorities, public service companies, and the formal value chain. It provides new insights on the operational activities, physical systems, institutional relationships and economics of (Roma) informal collectors. The Study also provides valuable insights as well as recommendations for structural integration of the informal sector in Serbia.

This years’ ISWA World Congress was held from 22-24 October in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, while the ISWA Publication Award attracted 15 strong submissions tackling a variety of pressing topics on the global waste management agenda. Mrs. Marija Bogdanovic, Deputy Team Leader of the project has received the 2nd prize Award.

The ISWA Publication Award has been created with the intention of honoring the author(s) of a publication, article or book which is deemed to be exceptional in its contribution to the field of solid waste management. Each year, ISWA’s panel of expert judges recognize the publication which they feel offers the most valuable contribution to the promotion of sustainable waste management.

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