Postgraduate Research &
Innovation Symposium (PRIS)

Community-based management of household solid waste for Harare, Zimbabwe: A system dynamics approach

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Ms Phyllis R Kwenda – Community-Based Management of Household Solid Waste for Harare, Zimbabwe: A System Dynamics Approach, is the title of the paper Kwenda will present at PRIS 2021.

Kwenda has made presentations at a variety of conferences and seminars during the past three years and is looking forward to improving her research through feedback from the PRIS audience.

Kwenda, who has recently submitted the presentation she will make during the conference as her thesis for her PhD in Bioresources Systems, holds an MSc in Bioresources Systems, BSc (Hons) in Microbiology, and a BSc in Industrial and Applied Biotechnology (cum laude). She is a member of the Golden Key society and holds numerous short course certificates. To expand her knowledge in her field of interest, Kwenda has attended summer schools on the managing waste and the system dynamic, and has worked as a teaching assistant at high school and university levels.

A highly motivated researcher, a variety of factors contributed to her decision to pursue research in the field of proper solid waste management the results of which, she says, have the potential to address 11 of the 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs), to mitigate climate change, ensure environmental preservation and safeguard human health, and thus protect the future of generations to come.

‘Life is very short, but I believe each one of us has an assignment to complete and a purpose to understand. Not only for what there is to gain but what there is to give,’ said Kwenda, who believes in doing research that gives back to family, friends, community, city, country, continent and the world. ‘Science, when used responsibly, is a tool to help understand and protect our home, earth.’

Her study is based in Harare, Zimbabwe as a case study of a developing country. The city has poor solid waste management with household solid waste (HSW) not only the most complex type of solid waste due to its non-homogeneity but also the majority of the solid waste generated in the city. With the Harare municipality lacking in terms of human resources in both the financial and technical fields, the study explored a community-based approach to HSW management.

Kwenda, whose work has been published in the Waste Management and Research Journal, is in the process of publishing three more papers.

Words: Samantha Ngcongo