Littering Attitude, Belief, and Practice of Students at Addis Ababa University: Qualitative Exploration


  • Tesfa Gashaw
  • Tesfaw Getnet
  • Wubshet Bethlehem


Littering Attitude, Littering belief, Littering Practice


This research investigated students’ beliefs about, attitudes toward, and practices of
littering. Research data was obtained from 24 self-selected students (19 for focus
group discussion & five for semi-structured interview) and photograph and videotaping of littered areas. An inductive thematic analysis of the data showed that
students are aware of their responsibility to take care of their environment despite
their failure to avoid littering anywhere. Problems in the person such as negligence,
responsibility diffusion, and lack of knowledge of the consequence of littering
anywhere, very limited and unattractive infrastructures like lack of dustbins, absence
of provision of enforceable rules and regulations and the associated consequences for
littering anywhere, and the traditional orientation that emphasise personal rather
than communal hygiene were the most noted reasons for littering anywhere. Voucher
cards, cigarette butts, bus tickets, plastic shopping bags (‘festal’ in
Amharic), aluminium foils, chewed gum, and related dust were found to be the most
littered items. Thus, measures like dustbins and professional attitudinal and
behavioural change training and sensitisation programs shall be implemented to
manage the littering problem