Research and Related Recommendations

The Most Effective Ways to Change Recycling Behavior According to Scholarly Article Research

flow chart of attention, motivation, information, and feedback






1) Create and distribute motivational signs in buildings surrounding the Diag to initiate public awareness of the relevant, local recycling issue, and to fram the issue of recycling in people's minds before they likely walk through the diag and encounter recycling bins; Example: Recycling facts that relate to landfills in Michigan and pollution of the Great Lakes. View the psychology research!

2) Create and place large signs with clear, bright text on or directly next to recycling bins on the Diag informing the public of the location of recycling bins. Also, touch on the inconvenience they go through in order to recycle, but more important have a persuasive message reminding them of the benefit they and the world get from  recycling.  View the communications research!

3) Encourage professors and students to place recycling bins in classrooms and large lectures. It is proven that having recycling bins in every class room with signs stating that there is a recycling bin present drastically increases the behavior of individuals to recycle on a daily basis. View the psychology research!

4) Create and place sensors and speakers on top of the inside of the recycling bins, playing nature sounds when people walk within a certain distance of the cans, and thanking them for the inconvenience of recycling when they place a proper recyclable in the bin. View the psychology research!

5) Create and place stickers right above the hole of the bins thanking people for going out of their way to recycle, and a persuasive message describing their impact; Example: “Thanks for going out of your way to recycle! Your effort is truly helping to preserve the Great Lakes of Michigan!” View the psychology research!


The content for this page was developed by Environ 211 students Karishma Satapathy, Ava Landgraf, David Henslovitz, Nathan Vellayan, and Alex Robinson

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