Thework presented in this report provides an account of a research study of alimited scope. The study was carried out in Ethekwini Metropolitan MunicipalityArea in the province of KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. Thearea has various infrastructure critical to basic needs. These will includeelectrified households, schools, roads, health care centre (within 2km radius)and other social amenities like churches. There is running water.
Thesanitation project was completed a couple of years back by the municipality.Thetheme of the study is sustainability, development policy, practice anddevelopment. The research topic is about uncovering reasons behind illegaldumping practice. The research site is a village within a rural ward of themunicipality.
Illegal dumping is falls within the broader concept of householdsolid waste management. The identified problem emanates hugely from household solidwaste which is discarded on a slope that feeds into a ravine. It is impossibleto ignore the long term effects of inappropriate waste disposal methods on theenvironment. Theinterest to the topic is that studies carried out within the municipality focussedprimarily on urban areas and private properties Abel, (2011). Therefore the question of waste managementtrends and offences associated with remains of particular importance in therural areas of this metro. Thestudy therefore aims to gain a better understanding of why do residents dump.The question of why is fundamental in this context because the municipalityprovides a waste collection service oncea week.
The study also want to learn how does illegal dumping affect the neighbourhood/ neighbours of the villageunder concern. It is of interest to learn about various perceptions aboutillegal waste disposal. Thirdly thestudy intends to gain insights on the municipal policies relating to wastemanagement and education. This aspect is crucial in the formulation ofappropriate programmes to challenge the behaviour of residents. Thereport is organised into six chapters. The first chapter is titled introduction. It introduces the researchtopic, objectives and summarises methodology and the entire research process.
The second chapter is literature review and theoretical framework. An attempt ismade to provide for theory and practical perspectives of the study. Subsequentchapters speaks to background of the topic, research design and methodology.The final chapter presents the findings, challenges and recommendations as theyrelate to the identified research objectives. Theplanning of the study and its execution took into cognisance that the study is ofa limited scope. The mixed approach method was used as an approach for thestudy.
The topic under concern allowed for the combination of approaches. Theobjectives of the study were to understand the policy framework of themunicipality. The policy component could be better understood by askingquestions about frequency of collection, awareness about the existence ofservices to check/confirm whether the service of waste collection is rendered.Secondly the researcher wanted to find out why do some residents practiceillegal dumping when others do not. This objective could have been betteranswered by using open ended questions.
The researcher was also interested infinding out how residents in the neighbourhood are affected by illegal dumping.The mix of objectives allowed for the use of mixed approaches to research. Thedata collection was done with the means of a questionnaire and researchersobservations. The questionnaire design incorporated both closed questions andopen ended questions. As part of quantitative data collection measure, the researcher spent considerable hours observingwhat was happening at the dumping site. The combination of a questionnaire andresearcher observations made up for the mixed research approach of thestudy. In terms of sampling there was a guideline from the researchreport module about the number of participants that could be interviewed. Theseguidelines assisted in terms of deciding on the data collection techniques andsampling.
Dataanalysis and interpretation was carefully sought. The key concepts were definedfor the study, the coding of the data was prepared in accordance with the key conceptsand variables operationalised during data collection. The interviewer was alsothe interpreter of the data which made things a lot more easier. Scribing wasused as means of recording participants responses. There were no difficultiesexperienced with transcribing.