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ComplexCity Waste Strategies

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Empowerment and recognition of informal waste collectors in urban systems


To create, disseminate, and support strategies to improve the lives of informal waste collectors.

Organizational values:

  • The inherent worth and dignity of informal waste collectors
  • The indispensable role informal waste collectors play in urban systems
  • Self-ownership and informed consent for release of all data collected by informal waste collectors
  • Listening and learning from the life and work of informal waste collectors

ComplexCity Waste Strategies is a non-profit dedicated to supporting informal waste collector (scavenger) communities around the world.  Our organization does this by creating, disseminating and maintaining tools designed to be self-implemented by scavengers and those that work with them.

ComplexCity Waste Strategies was founded in 2011 by five people – Jay Bowman, Marc Dettmann, Jessica Hillyard, Mike Osberg and Lindsey Wollschlager.  We five met while students at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota.  During our coursework we developed a passion for the informal waste sector through the development of the Waste Management Analysis Tool (WMAT).  We are eager to continuing to develop, disseminate and improve the tools to support scavenger communities.





Arsova, L. (2011). ComplexCity Waste Strategies. Retrieved from


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