Public Policy Meeting
Public Policy Meeting
Name of the Student
Name of the Institution
Public Policy Meeting
Although technological advancements and industrial revolution has brought about some good changes in human life there is other side of the picture. Littering and pollution is one of those things. Littering is a serious public problem potent enough producing immense pollution. The paper is about the meeting that I have with different stakeholders with regards to how public policy making is needed to be carried out to make sure that land pollution and littering is controlled. Each of the sub factors are going to be discussed during the paper so that some insight is developed in this regard.
Particulars of the Meeting
This meeting was held in the district school of Los Angeles at 11 A.M. and lasted couple of hours, aimed at presenting the prevalence of littering and charting preventive strategies. Litter is typically referred to as trash thrown in the most inappropriate place, time and manner. This practice is considered illegal because it costs millions to the government in terms of cleanup costs. Along with the economical disadvantages, it spoils the outlook of the area. Schools are highly formalized institutions, adding constructive learning for shaping students’ personality and thus educational institutes have a role to play with regards to how these instances can be controlled.
Discussion and Premises of the Meeting
As meeting was aimed at addressing the littering issues in the educational institutions, the focus was centered on some of the ways through which the whole thing can be managed and degree of control is achieved in this regard. Following items were addressed in the meeting:
What is the psychological rationale behind littering? Why students tend to throw remains inappropriately? What is the nature of their innate predispositions and thinking patterns in this regard?
What role is played by the environmental factors for littering?
How social interactions play its role in the littering?
Development and implementation of technique effective for discouraging littering
Participants of the Meeting
As it was a school board meeting, stakeholders consisted of Head of the institution, teachers, parents, management staff and governmental representatives belonging to the concerned authorities.
How to Control Littering
Environmental role is also considerably significant in this regard. Students litter because they lack appropriate littering places e.g., dustbins; location of dustbins is another factor behind littering. They may find no time for reaching such places to throw remains and prefer littering where “convenient.” The most important factor behind littering is social factor. Behavioral psychologist Albert Bandura presented the “social learning theory” stating that humans behave in certain ways just because other humans do so (Bandura, 1977). Students learn to litter because they observe other students littering.
Moreover, another renowned psychologist B. F. Skinner suggested that reinforcement and punishment are two accepted ways that shape our behaviors in desired ways (Skinner, 1938). Applying this operant conditioning model to the littering phenomenon, it can be inferred that students litter because they do not get anything extraordinarily positive and desirable when they “do not litter” likewise, they do not get extraordinarily undesirable and unfavorable reward when they litter.
Peer pressure is another compelling factor behind littering. Students litter because they have to maintain peer group standards and norms. Hence, psychological, environmental and social factors collaboratively foster littering behavior. Based on these facts and figures, it was decided that:
Dustbins will be installed with the compelling messages on it at appropriate intervals
A grading activity will be assigned to the students involving awareness campaign and practical attempts to reduce wastes. This activity will be monitored by teachers and management staff and its successful completion will bring considerable percentages in the annual examination result.
Each class will be assigned particular areas in the school responsible for reducing littering. Monthly rewards will be presented to the top groups.
Educational lectures and importance of cleanliness will be included in the formal class instructions.
Nearly all the stake holders agreed on the above mentioned points because its cost is far less than what litter authorities consume annually. Their cost/benefit analysis justifies their implementation.
Perspective of the People Who Attended the Meeting
There was a mutual consensus among all the stakeholders that the effort must be made to make sure that the littering practices are needed to be discouraged at all the levels. Not only that, there is also a need to make sure that the psychological theories are integrated in the school so that people realize that this is something that is wrong and thus make an effort to mend their behavior. Not only that, the strategies are needed to be implemented and the campaign has to be run at the level of the school to make sure that this whole issue can be highlighted and controlled.
Learning from the Experience
One of the thing that I was able to learn from the whole incident is that how important it is for the people to have accountability with regards to how they behave. They should understand every action that is taken by them is going to be held against them and thus there is a need to make sure that they act in a more responsible manner. Whether it is done with the help of the reinforcements or punishment is something that is yet to be seen. With little effort, this whole issue can be controlled, There has to be fines and other such rationales implemented to make sure that people do away with littering and stop this whole process.
Bandura, A. (1977). Social learning theory. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Skinner, B. F. (1938). The Behavior of organisms: An experimental analysis. New York: Appleton-Century.
Jung, C. G. (1953). Collected works. Vol. 12. Psychology and alchemy.
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