Letters in Spatial and Resource Sciences

, Volume 12, Issue 1, pp 63–85 | Cite as

The effect of environmental attitudes and policies on separate waste collection: the case of Insular Italy

  • Rosalia Castellano
  • Gaetano Musella
  • Gennaro PunzoEmail author
Original Paper


This paper investigates the factors determining waste management performance by comparing two Italian regions, Sicily and Sardinia. Using data from official records at the municipal level, the recentered influence function regression is implemented to evaluate the territorial divide in separate waste collection rates between the regions. Then, the divide is disentangled into administrative and spatial components. The administrative component evaluates the effectiveness of the strategic policies set by the regional authority and their implementation by municipalities. The spatial component captures the presence of spatial contagion effect and considers citizens’ pro-environmental behaviours. The main results show that Sardinia has achieved better performance because of its advantages of extrinsic motivations, citizens’ pro-environmental attitudes, local institutional quality, and synergy between citizens and local governments. In Sicily, the weakness of local institutions makes citizens’ participation difficult and generates citizens’ indifference towards environmental issues, explaining most of the failures in the regional waste management.


Separate waste collection Pro-environmental behaviours Local governments RIF regression Spillover effects 

JEL Classification

C21 Q53 Q58 R11 R5 



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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Management and Quantitative StudiesUniversity of Naples “Parthenope”NaplesItaly
  2. 2.Department of Economic and Legal StudiesUniversity of Naples “Parthenope”NaplesItaly

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