This project is part of the ARC Industrial Transformation Research Hub for Transformation of Reclaimed Waste Resources to Engineered Materials and Solutions for a Circular Economy (TREMS), which will address the urgent waste crisis in Australia.

  • Project dates: 2022 (ongoing)

Theme 1 of TREMS, Social change and smart design to minimise waste, is being led by Professor Ralph Horne, and has three projects. Professor Horne is the chief investigator on Project 2, Social and policy dimensions of waste minimisation and waste management. Dr Bhavna Middha is the Research Fellow and Ms Sara Pishgahi is the PhD Student.

Subproject 1: THE CIRCULAR ECONOMY APPROACH                                                                        

Mapping and building Circular Economy networks, infrastructures and institutions to minimise waste                                                                     


  • Learning from European markets and exploring appetite in Victorian and Australian markets – selected case studies                                                                                
  • Identifying mature or easily implementable solutions for trials in Theme 4 contributing to CE Pilot
  • Circular Economy pilot with local councils                                                                            

Subproject 2: MINIMISING KERBSIDE WASTE AND CONTAMINATION                                                                      

Efficient and effective co-mingled waste minimisation: Detailed analyses of domestic practices.                                                                              


  • Explore strategies for domestic waste minimisation (packaging)                                                                
  • Investigate effective domestic waste disposal                                                                     
  • Explore how waste recovery (and separation) from co-mingled waste can be made efficient.

If you live in an apartment and are keen to participate in our research, pls contact Bhavna at 03 9925 4891

More about TREMS

Australia’s landfill space is expected to reach capacity by 2025, with roughly 67 million tonnes of waste generated every year, and 30% of that waste going to landfill. The ARC Industrial Transformation Research Hub for Transformation of Reclaimed Waste Resources to Engineered Materials and Solutions for a Circular Economy (TREMS) will address the urgent waste crisis in Australia.

The TREMS research hub brings together leading scientists, researchers and industrial experts from nine Australian universities and 36 state, industry and international partners and being led by RMIT and Melbourne Universities. The TREMS hub is based around five themes.

Combined these themes will:

  • Change Practice
  • Reduce Contamination
  • Inform Evidence Based Standards and Guidelines and,
  • Build Supply Chain Confidence

Learn more here


Horne R., Dorignon L., Middha, B. (2022). “High-rise plastic: Socio-material entanglements in apartments”, The Geographical Journal, doi: 10.1111/geoj.12457


Key People

Associate Director & Deputies

Professor Ralph Horne

Professor Ralph Horne

Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor, Research and Innovation

Dr Bhavna Middha

Dr Bhavna Middha

Research Fellow

Sara Pishgahi

Sara Pishgahi

PhD Candidate

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