an official journal of: published by:
an official journal of: published by:
Editor in Chief: RAFFAELLO COSSU


  • Ariadne Wilkinson - EMEA Energy & Sustainability, CBRE Ltd, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • Ian D. Williams - Faculty of Engineering and the Environment, University of Southampton, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Released under CC BY-NC-ND

Copyright: © 2020 CISA Publisher


Home entertainment (HE) products are particularly rich in metals and plastics and thus have enormous potential as a source of materials from within Distinct Urban Mines (DUMs). Consumers’ end-of-life (EoL) management decisions (i.e. stockpiling, hoarding, reusing, discarding of WEEE) strongly influence the exploitation potential of a DUM. This study aimed to assess the effect of consumer behaviour on the release of HE (W)EEE into the circular economy. A survey was undertaken in Southampton (Hampshire, UK) to assess perceptions and behaviours relating to the EoL management of HE (W)EEE. The study provides previously unavailable data and critical evaluation on the ownership, use and hoarding levels of HE EEE in a typical city DUM, and the reasons behind their hoarding. Results indicated that ownership levels were very high, with an average of 12 home entertainment items owned per household. This makes urban areas extremely plausible as DUMs; we estimate that there are over 1 million HE devices owned and ~440,000 HE devices hoarded in Southampton and >150 million HE EEE owned and ~61 million HE devices hoarded in UK households. Hoarding is common, especially for smaller or older equipment, due to their perceived residual value. HE product lifecycles averaged 4-5 years. The most common EoL routes were donating to relatives, friends or charities; hoarding; recycling; or discarding items in general refuse. To encourage the recovery of EoL HE equipment: i) convenient and accessible WEEE collection points should be established for regular (periodic) harvesting and ii) promoted via awareness campaigns and incentives.


Editorial History

  • Received: 11 Jan 2020
  • Revised: 30 Apr 2020
  • Accepted: 05 May 2020
  • Available online: 07 Sep 2020


Baldé, C.P., Wang, F., Kuehr, R., Huisman, J. (2015). The global e-waste monitor – 2014, United Nations University. IAS – SCYCLE. Bonn, Germany

Benton, R. (2014). Reduce, Reuse, Recycle … and Refuse. Journal of Macromarketing, 35(1), 111-122

Berglund, C., and Matti, S. (2006). Citizen and consumer: the dual role of individuals in environmental policy. Environmental Politics, 15(4), 550–571

Broadcasters Audience Research Board (BARB). (2018). Television ownership in private domestic households 1956-2018 (millions). [online] Available at: [Accessed 13 Mar. 2018]

Business Wire. (2017). Top 3 Trends Impacting the Global Portable Speaker Market Through 2021. [online] Available at: [Accessed 3 Apr. 2018]

Cherry, C. E. and Pidgeon, N. F. (2018). Is sharing the solution? Exploring public acceptability of the sharing economy. Journal of Cleaner Production, 195, 939-948

Cooper, T. (2002). Durable consumption: reflections on product life cycles and the throwaway society. Life-Cycle Approaches to Sustainable Consumption Workshop Proceedings, International Institute
for Applied Systems Analysis, Luxemburg, December 2002, 15–27

D’Angelo, W. (2017). PS4 vs Xbox One vs Wii U Global Lifetime Sales – January 2017 Update. [online] VGChartz. Available at: [Accessed 5 Apr. 2018]

Darby, L. and Obara, L. (2005). Household recycling behaviour and attitudes towards the disposal of small electrical and electronic equipment. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 44(1), 17-35

Energy Saving Trust (2018). Powering the Nation. Household electricity habits revealed. [online] London: Energy Saving Trust. Available at: [Accessed 15 Mar. 2018]

Fletcher, C.A. & Dunk, R.M. (2018). In the search for effective waste policy: Alignment of UK waste strategy with the circular economy. Detritus, 04, 48-62

Golev, A., Schmeda-Lopez, D., Smart, S., Corder, G. and McFarland, E. (2016). Where next on e-waste in Australia? Waste Management, 58, 348-358

Haig, S., Morrish, L., Morton, R. and Wilkinson, S. (2012). Electrical product material composition. Overview of updated data within the Market Flows Model of Electronic Products. [online] WRAP. Available at:

Hampshire County Council (HCC). (2008). Census Household Composition. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 Apr. 2018]

Hursthouse, A., Kelly, S., McPherson, W., Menzies, B., Mirzaeian, M. and Wood, D. (2017). WEEE collection and CRM recovery trials: piloting a holistic approach for Scotland. Conference on Environmental Science and Technology. Rhodes, Greece

Imran, M., Haydar, S., Kim, J., Awan, M. and Bhatti, A. (2017). E-waste flows, resource recovery and improvement of legal framework in Pakistan. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 125, 131-138

Izatt, R., Izatt, S., Bruening, R., Izatt, N. and Moyer, B. (2014). Challenges to achievement of metal sustainability in our high-tech society. Chem. Soc. Rev., 43(8), 2451-2475

J’son & Partners (2017). Smart TV Market, 2010 – 2017. Market Watch. [online] J’son & Partners Management Consultancy. Available at: [Accessed 14 Mar. 2018]

Kang, H. and Schoenung, J. (2005). Electronic waste recycling: A review of U.S. infrastructure and technology options. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 45(4), 368-400

Li, B., Yang, J., Song, X. and Lu, B. (2012). Survey on Disposal Behaviour and Awareness of Mobile Phones in Chinese University Students. Procedia Environmental Sciences, 16, 469-476

Lin, P. and Huang, Y. (2012). The influence factors on choice behavior regarding green products based on the theory of consumption values. Journal of Cleaner Production, 22(1), 11-18

Lodhia, S., Martin, N. and Rice, J. (2017). Extended Producer Responsibility for waste televisions and computers: A regulatory evaluation of the Australian experience. Journal of Cleaner Production, 164, 927-938

Long, E., Kokke, S., Lundie, D., Shaw, N., Ijomah, W. and Kao, C. (2016). Technical solutions to improve global sustainable management of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) in the EU and China. Journal of Remanufacturing, 6(1)

Martin, C. J. (2016). The sharing economy: A pathway to sustainability or a nightmarish form of neoliberal capitalism? Ecological Economics, 121, 149-159

Massari, S. and Ruberti, M. (2013). Rare earth elements as critical raw materials: Focus on international markets and future strategies. Resources Policy, 38(1), 36-43

McCollough, J. (2009). Factors impacting the demand for repair services of household products: the disappearing repair trades and the throwaway society. International Journal of Consumer Studies, 33(6), 619-626

Ministry for the Environment (MFE). (2006). Electrical and electronic equipment survey January 2006: A quantitative report. [online] Ministry for the Environment. Available at: [Accessed 15 Mar. 2018]

Morris, A. and Metternicht, G. (2016). Assessing effectiveness of WEEE management policy in Australia. Journal of Environmental Management, 181, 218-230

Office for National Statistics (ONS). (2016). Families and households in the UK - Office for National Statistics. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 Apr. 2018]

Ongondo, F. and Williams, I. (2011a). Are WEEE in Control? Rethinking Strategies for Managing Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment. In: S. Kumar, ed., Integrated Waste Management - Volume II. [online] InTech. Available at: [Accessed 15 Mar. 2018]
DOI 10.5772/20506

Ongondo, F. and Williams, I. (2011b). Greening academia: Use and disposal of mobile phones among university students. Waste Management, 31(7), 1617-1634

Ongondo, F. and Williams, I. (2012). A critical review of the UK household WEEE collection network. Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers - Waste and Resource Management, 165(1), 13-23

Ongondo, F., Williams, I. and Cherrett, T. (2011a). How are WEEE doing? A global review of the management of electrical and electronic wastes. Waste Management, 31(4), 714-730

Ongondo, F., Williams, I. and Keynes, S. (2011b). Estimating the impact of the “digital switchover” on disposal of WEEE at household waste recycling centres in England. Waste Management, 31(4), 743-753

Ongondo, F., Williams, I. and Whitlock, G. (2015). Distinct Urban Mines: Exploiting secondary resources in unique anthropogenic spaces. Waste Management, 45, 4-9 (2015). English Indices of Deprivation: map explorer 2015 (Index of Multiple Deprivation). [online] Available at: [Accessed 12 Oct. 2017]

Osibanjo, O. and Nnorom, I. (2007). The challenge of electronic waste (e-waste) management in developing countries. Waste Management & Research, 25(6), 489-501

Osterley, R. and Williams, I.D. (2019). The social, environmental and economic benefits of reuse by charity shops. Detritus, 07, 29-35

Pierron, X., Williams, I., Shaw, P. and Cleaver, V. (2017). Using choice architecture to exploit a university Distinct Urban Mine. Waste Management, 68, 547-556

Saphores, J., Nixon, H., Ogunseitan, O. and Shapiro, A. (2009). How much e-waste is there in US basements and attics? Results from a national survey. Journal of Environmental Management, 90(11), 3322-3331

Schluep, M., Hageluken, C., Kuehr, R., Magalini, F., Maurer, C., Meskers, C., Mueller, E., Wang, F. (2009). Recycling – From E-waste to Resources. United Nations Environment Programme and United Nations University, Germany

Simon, F-G. & Holm, O. (2018). Resources from recycling and urban mining: limits and prospects. Detritus, 02, 24-28

Statista. (2018). Game consoles: ownership in Great Britain 2010-2017 Survey. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 Apr. 2018]

Timlett. R. E. and Williams. I. D. (2009). The impact of transient populations on recycling behaviour in a densely populated urban environment. Resources Conservation & Recycling, 53(9), 498–506

van Barneveld, J., van der Veen, G., Enenkel, K., Mooren, C., Talman-Gross, L., Eckartz, K., Ostertag, K., Duque-Ciceri, N., Fischer, T., Gama, M., Scheidt, L., Wilts, H., Schäfer, L. and Fischer, S. (2016). Regulatory barriers for the Circular Economy: Lessons from ten case studies. [online] Amsterdam: Technopolis Group. Available at: [Accessed 13 Jan. 2018]

Williams, I. (2016). Global Metal Reuse, and Formal and Informal Recycling from Electronic and Other High‐Tech Wastes. In: Metal Sustainability: Global Challenges, Consequences, and Prospects. 1st ed. John Wiley & Sons, 23-51

Williams, I.D. and Shaw, P.J. (2017). Editorial: Reuse: Fashion or future? Waste Management, 60, 1-2

Ylä-Mella, J., Keiski, R. and Pongrácz, E. (2015). Electronic waste recovery in Finland: Consumers’ perceptions towards recycling and re-use of mobile phones. Waste Management, 45, 374-384