Degree Name

MA in Sustainable Development

First Advisor

Nikoi Kote-Nikoi


Costa Rica is a country famous for its efforts in environmental protection. Despite its numerous innovative steps toward the protection of its natural biodiversity and resources, the country has still not yet provided basic environmental services, such as local trash collection, to its entire population. This paper examines the processes of organizing the campaign to petition the Municipality to organize trash collection in Costa Rica. It provides a case study of policy advocacy in sustainable rural development. It is informed by my experience as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Rural Community Development program, during which time the Municipality was successfully petitioned for regular trash collection. The campaign was carried out within the context of a town of about 500 people in northern Costa Rica, which was suffering due to the recent fall in pineapple prices and the closing of a nearby pineapple packing plant. The impetus for the campaign was the national waste management law that was passed in 2010, mandating responsibility for trash collection and recycling on the Municipal level. After first describing the campaign and its context, the paper evaluates its objectives, coalition, and outcomes according to criteria presented by Schultz, VeneKlasen and Miller (2002, 2007). The paper concludes with a reflection on the need for capacity building in policy advocacy, particularly when working with underprivileged populations.


Environmental Health and Protection | Environmental Indicators and Impact Assessment | Environmental Policy


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