Dr Ruth Lane

  • My current research focuses on geographies of waste and recycling, including municipal solid waste and waste water, but I have also worked on social and cultural dimensions of land use and environmental change in rural Australia and environmental impact assessment.

    In 2013 I commenced work on the multi-university CSIRO research cluster, Wealth from Waste, which explores the feasibility of developing advanced metals recycling in Australia based on urban mining. I lead an interdisciplinary research team focused on characterising and mapping the potential resource of recyclable materials in Australian cities, identifying social, economic, legal and logistical challenges for collection, and proposing realistic measures for addressing these. Key outcomes of this research will be an interactive atlas of recyclable resources in Australian cities and a detailed appraisal of existing collection systems for specific used products and materials.

    My recent research on the reuse of household goods in Melbourne (Australia) and Sheffield, (UK) contributes to new thinking about product stewardship, consumption practices and sustainable cities. It contributes to an emerging research focus on social and cultural dimensions of household sustainability and adaptation to climate change, which is captured in the edited volume, ‘Material Geographies and Household Sustainability’ (Lane and Gorman-Murray 2011). 

    I teach in the areas of environmental governance, assessments and decision-making and coordinate the coursework Master of Environmental Management and Sustainability program.

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