Challenges of building environmental stewardship through sense of place for improvement of waste management in peri-urban landscapes: A case of the Xochimilco wetland in Mexico City

Authors: Beatriz Ruizpalacios*, UNAM
Topics: Sustainability Science, Behavioral Geography
Keywords: Stewardship, Environmental behaviour, Waste managmenet, Mexico, Sense of place, Peri-urban
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/11/2018
Start / End Time: 1:20 PM / 3:00 PM
Room: Napoleon A3, Sheraton, 3rd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

The Xochimilco wetland in the peri-urban fringe of Mexico City is undergoing rapid change
and degradation due to management and institutional failures, changes in lifestyles and
patterns of consumption, the coexistence of urban and rural livelihoods and changes in
land use, among others. This socio-ecological system presents challenges for the
provision of urban waste management services and the maintenance of ecosystem
services in the face of growing production of waste. Improving local waste management
may contribute to reduce the degradation of the socio-ecological system and urban
infrastructure, promote virtuous circles in the behavior of individuals towards waste
disposal and contribute to promote sustainable resilience of the system.
This paper will explore how sense of place can foster stewardship and influence
institutional arrangements in municipal waste management in a community in Xochimilco.
Qualitative research reveals that residents see other actors as responsible for waste
management and react to the landscape in the strategies they choose. These spaces pose
potential challenges and opportunities for possibly inserting mechanisms to adapt to new
urban realities, which are increasingly common in an urbanizing world. Through the use of
participatory methodologies I propose to foster the creation of local categories for waste
management strategies and associated social, economic and ecological problems, to
advance transformation in behavior patterns and organization towards waste.

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