Mission-oriented innovation in urban governance: Setting and solving problems in waste valorisation
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Original versionBugge, M. M. & Fevolden, A. M. (2019). Mission-oriented innovation in urban governance: Setting and solving problems in waste valorisation. In A. Klitkou, A. M. Fevolden & M. Capasso (Eds.), From Waste to Value: Valorisation Pathways for Organic Waste Streams in Circular Bioeconomies (91-106). Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge.
As an ever-greater part of the world’s population is living in cities, dealing with urban waste is becoming an increasingly prominent challenge for local authorities (Frantzeskaki & Kabisch, 2016). In many places, local authorities are struggling to cope with growing amounts of waste annually, as cities grow and citizens’ consumption rises (Hoornweg, Bhada-Tata & Kennedy, 2013). Local authorities that lack the organizational capabilities and physical infrastructure to deal effectively with urban waste are often faced with huge environmental, economic and social problems (Hodson & Marvin, 2010; Mourad, 2016). Nevertheless, investments in organisational capabilities and physical infrastructure come with challenges and problems of their own. These investments tend to create lock-ins (see Chapter 3), which make the waste treatment system inflexible and prevent further improvements (David, 1985; Geels, 2002). The local authorities that make these investments run the risk of becoming stuck with systems that are technologically outdated and adequate only to deal with yesterday’s problems. To introduce new and smarter urban waste systems, local authorities need to challenge existing policies and institutions, technologies and business models (Uyarra & Gee, 2013; Weber & Rohracher, 2012).