Mobile application in municipal waste tracking: a pilot study of “PAC waste tracker” in Bangalore city, India

  • Bhargavi NagendraEmail author
  • Arvind Lakshmisha
  • Priyanka Agarwal


According to the 2011 Census, urbanization has increased faster than expected in India and will witness the largest increase in urban population in the next 4 decades followed by China. This poses an unprecedented challenge of meeting the demand for key service, especially waste management. The study focuses on the case of Bangalore, a city facing a unique solid-waste management crisis. Even with considerable advancement in collecting and segregating waste, only 20% of waste remains picked or is picked irregularly. Public Affairs Centre, a not for profit think tank in Bangalore, launched the PAC Waste Tracker app using citizen science and visual mapping to identify the various issues plaguing the waste collection mechanism in the city with inclusivity. The pilot project undertaken in the four wards has highlighted the issues arising at each and every collection point. These issues tracked for a period of 9 months which showed irregular waste collection, non-segregation of waste, inconvenience caused during collection, and non-compliance with transportation of waste through a bottom–up approach. The findings of the study were presented to local councillors, service providers, and municipal bodies ensuring policy implementation of this study and hence closing the loop of solving the issues.


Waste management Citizen science Crowd sourcing Urbanization 



The authors wish to thank Ms. Poornima G R, Program Officer, and Mr. Jangal Jayaram, Consultant at Public Affairs Centre for their valuable support and guidance in undertaking this study, in terms of designing and field testing the application, training of volunteers, and discussions with ward councillors. The authors also thank representatives of Society for Peoples Action for Development (SPAD), the local NGO who were our on field partners. Furthermore, we would like to thank volunteers in all four wards of Bengaluru who took time and effort to contribute to the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Japan KK, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.1Public Affairs CentreBangaloreIndia
  2. 2.University of KasselKasselGermany

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