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Exploring critical influencing factors for the site selection failure of waste-to-energy projects in China caused by the “not in my back yard” effect

Xuhui Cong (Department of Construction Management, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian, China)
Liang Wang (Department of Construction Management, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian, China)
Li Ma (Department of Construction Management, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian, China) (School of Business, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian, China)
M. Skibnewski (University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland, USA)

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management

ISSN: 0969-9988

Article publication date: 12 October 2020

Issue publication date: 25 June 2021

417

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to explore the critical influencing factors that lead to the site selection failure of waste-to-energy (WtE) projects in China under the influence of the “Not In My Back Yard” (NIMBY) effect, which can provide references to improve the decision-making process of similar projects in the future.

Design/methodology/approach

The fuzzy decision-making trial and evaluation laboratory (DEMATEL) method was used to propose an analytical framework for exploring the critical influencing factors affecting the site selection failure of WtE projects. The causal relationship between different influencing factors is finally determined on the basis of the opinions of 12 experts from universities, government departments, consulting units, planning and design units, construction units and WtE enterprises.

Findings

Results showed that six crucial factors resulted in the site selection failure of WtE projects from the NIMBY effect perspective: “Insufficient public participation,” “Near the place of residence,” “Nonstandard government decision-making processes,” “Low information disclosure,” “Destroys the surrounding environment,” and “Imperfect compensation scheme.”

Originality/value

Results can determine the priorities and causal relationships among the various influencing factors. The decision-making optimization suggestions can provide reference for decision- makers, thereby possibly promoting the scientific and standardization of site selection decision process.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

We would like to give our appreciation to the anonymous reviewers and editors. This study was supported by the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (DUT18RW208) and the National Social Science Funding Program (15BGL023).

Citation

Cong, X., Wang, L., Ma, L. and Skibnewski, M. (2021), "Exploring critical influencing factors for the site selection failure of waste-to-energy projects in China caused by the “not in my back yard” effect", Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, Vol. 28 No. 6, pp. 1561-1592. https://doi.org/10.1108/ECAM-12-2019-0709

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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