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Book review on Urban Waste Management. European Comparative Perspective.




In 2009 has been published at Academy of Economic Studies Publishing House of Bucharest, Romania, the book "Urban Waste Management. European Comparative perspective", written by Stefan Gabriel Burcea. The paper was published with the support of CNCSIS project, TD Program, contract no. 153/2007, Theme 7 "The elaboration of an integrated waste management system and of an evaluation methodology of its efficiency".

Stefan Gabriel Burcea, teaching assistant at Academy of Economic Studies, Bucharest, Romania, is a dedicated researcher and a prolific author of articles and papers in the field of waste management. Since 2005 he works on his doctoral thesis in Integrated Urban Waste Management.

The book is not only a source of documentation, but also a material of in depth information on the potential means through which the decision makers can contribute to the harmonious development of systems for waste management. With its new and relevant subject matter, with the ingenuity management approach which it fosters and with the outline of an integrated vision of urban waste management, where the principles and the essential coordinates are consistent with those of developed European countries, the paper represents a reference pole for both specialists and practitioners in the area, as well as for the academic and scientific community.

The book is divided into ten chapters and each chapter dedicated to a country of the European Union aims to identify and analyze the particularities of each state:
I.     Austria
II.    Belgium
II.    Denmark
IV.    Finland
V.     France
VI.    Greece
VII.   Italy
VIII.  Netherlands
IX.    United Kingdom of Great Britain
       And Northern Ireland
X.     Sweden

Each of the ten chapters that brings into the reader's foreground the experience of a community state in waste management is divided into six subchapters:

1. General information

The presentation of general information from a demographic, economic, social point of view etc. aims the understanding of the defining features with direct or indirect impact on the effectiveness of waste management policy undertaken by the state. This subchapter focuses on aspects of purchasing power, standard of living and other specific social and economic conditions which imprint a special character to the efficiency of urban waste management system.

2. Legislative framework for waste management

The knowledge of the elements described in this chapter allows the understanding of the mechanisms of emergence and development of various initiatives belonging to the policy-makers, facilitating the achievement of remarkable results in the area. Presenting the way in which the analysed states succeeded to transpose and implement the European directives on waste incineration and storage is a reference for specialists and practitioners in the area.

3. Institutional framework--roles and responsibilities for urban waste management

The third subchapter explains the way in which the roles and responsibilities of urban waste management are assigned between different administrative levels. These explanations give the reader a full understanding of the type and degree of involvement of central, regional and local authorities in solving problems related to urban waste. The presentation of all duties and responsibilities of policy makers in the system, and also the relationships developed between them in the context of policy on waste management allows the understanding of the ways in which the authorities of these countries have managed to successfully develop an integrated urban waste management.

4. Strategies and policies for waste management

This subchapter emphasizes the fundamental objectives undertaken by the states included in the study and integrated in the strategies, policies, plans and programs developed at different levels of government.

5. Instruments for implementation of waste management objectives

The fifth subchapter identifies and analyses the economic instruments used in the area. The readers can understand through them the way the authorities have managed to achieve the objectives undertaken by the strategic documents developed. The author cites a series of statistical arguments in order to justify the efficacy of using these instruments, managing to demonstrate, where appropriate, the feasibility of the measures taken.

6. Financing of urban waste management systems

Each of the ten subchapters ends by emphasizing general details on the financing of urban waste management system. The description of the main sources and opportunities for system funding, as well as the presentation of collection, transportation, treatment and disposal of urban waste costs are important both for citizens and policy makers and private operators, which aim to obtain profits from urban waste collection and treatment activity.


Research Centre in Public Administration and Public Services, Academy of Economic Studies

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Author:Pacesila, Mihaela
Publication:Theoretical and Empirical Researches in Urban Management
Article Type:Book review
Date:Nov 1, 2009
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