Article – “Food Waste as a (negative) Measure of Social Capital: a study across Italian Provinces,” Piras, Pancotto, Righi, Vittuari, Setti. (2018)
Piras, S., Pancotto, F., Righi, S., Vittuari, M., & Setti, M. (2018). Food waste as a (negative) measure of social capital. A study across Italian Provinces DEMB Working Paper Series, No. 127, University of Bologna
Household food waste is a crucial problem in developed countries. Food waste behavior is the result of complex interactions among economic factors, deeply rooted habits, and social norms. It can thus be considered a measure of the social capital characterizing a community. We test this hypothesis using a national-level dataset on household food-related behaviors and opinions in Italy gathered in 2016. This country is an ideal test bed for a comparative analysis on social capital. We ﬁnd household food waste measures to be negatively related with the local level of social capital.
We would like to thank Last Minute Market for sharing with us the 2016 ‘Waste Watcher’ dataset, Luigi Guiso for sharing the Province-level variables on social capital used in Guiso et al. (2004), and Aurelio Navarra from AIDO for sharing up-to-date statistics on AIDO membership. We are also grateful to the participants in the workshop “New dimensions of social capital: from big data to ﬁeld experiments” for their useful comments.