Conflict in Campania: Waste emergency or crisis of democracy

Giacomo D'Alisa, David Burgalassi, Hali Healy, Mariana Walter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

113 Citations (Scopus)


In 2008, the Italian Government issued a decree according to which obstructions or protests in the vicinity of landfills or incinerators became a penal felony. This was the outcome of a long process that began fifteen years before when regional waste treatment facilities became unable to cope with the waste accumulated in the region of Campania. This article studies the history of this conflict in order to identify a range of values and concerns about nature, health and democracy. It asserts that the decision-making process adopted by subsequent Italian governments, alongside repressive laws, oversimplified a complex crisis and obscured different emergent perspectives and values. Ultimately, denying the will of a large part of the population caused increased social unrest.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-249
Number of pages11
JournalEcological Economics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Democracy
  • Environmental conflict
  • Environmental justice
  • Hazardous and urban waste
  • Health
  • Post-normal science
  • Waste management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • Economics and Econometrics


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