Determining the Optimal Urban Waste Management Strategy Using SWOT Analysis: A Case Study in MeshginShahr, Iran

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Environmental Science and engineering, Ardabil Branch, Islamic Azad University, Ardabil, Iran.

2 Young Researcher and Elite Club, Ardabil Branch, Islamic Azad University, Ardabil, Iran

3 Teacher of Education, District One, Ardabil, Iran



Background: The context of social life today requires careful planning and promotion of organizational performance using appropriate methods. There are different models for measuring various factors affecting organizational performance. The purpose of this case study was to determine optimal urban waste management strategies in MeshginShahr, Iran.

Methods: The present descriptive-analytical survey research utilized the SWOT analysis to identify and formulate optimal urban waste management strategies. After recognizing strengths (S), weaknesses (W), opportunities (O) and threats (T) by the SWOT analysis, the TOWS matrix was used to extract all possible SO, WO, ST and WT strategies, which were then prioritized by QSPM approach based on their attractiveness scores (AS).

Results: Fifteen items were identified in each of internal (strengths and weaknesses) and external (opportunities and threats) factors. Based on the results, the municipal waste management has been relatively strong towards internal factors but has not been able to seize opportunities and deal with threats. The first and second priorities were WT1 (AS=12.15, Planning the establishment of a sanitary landfill management system at the landfill) and WO1 (AS=10.86, Establishment of a plant fertilizer plant due to high volume of perishable materials to reduce the waste volume) strategies, respectively.

Conclusions: Our results highlighted the need for applying defined strategies to reduce internal weaknesses and avoid external threats and take advantage of opportunities that lie in the advantages. Therefore, the results revealed that the SWOT matrix and the QSPM approach can be utilized simultaneously as an integrated method for formulating, evaluating and prioritizing strategies.


Main Subjects