Benjamin STEUER

Assistant Professor, Division of Environment and Sustainability

Tel: (852) 3469 2557
Fax: (852) 2335 9317
Office: Room 4362 (lifts 13/15)

Research Area
  • China’s circular economy
  • Institutional evolution
  • Municipal solid waste in Hong Kong and China: recovery, recycling, refurbishment and reuse
  • Political economy of sustainability in the Greater Bay Area
Research Interests
  • Evolutionary institutional economics: modelling regulatory change, institutional effectiveness, learning and competing interests
  • Field research strategies in the context of sustainability: innovation in data collection and verification
  • Informal economy: emergence and dynamics
  • Socio-economic and sustainable transformation in East Asia
  • Transforming waste into resources: identification of best feasible practices, value chains, effective regulatory environments and multiple actor interest alignments
  • Theoretical frameworks on environment and economy: industrial ecology, ecological economics
Peer reviewed publications
  • Steuer, B. (2024). The Circular Economy in China: For the people, with the people?  In: O’Hare, Patrick und Rams Dagma (eds.), “Circular Economies”, 1-23. London: Bloomsbury Publishing.
  • Steuer, B. (2023). Die Rolle von offiziellen Daten, Institutionen und der Kreislaufwirtschaft fuer Chinas Zukunft (The role of official data, institutions and the Circular Economy for China’s Future). In: Wemheuer F., Fuchs D., Klotzbuechler S. [eds.]: Sammelband fuer Susanne Weigelin-Schwiedrzik “Die Zukunft mit China denken“ (Vienna: Mandelbaumverlag).
  • Steuer, B.* and Chen, P. (2023). Exploring capacities, environmental benefits and potential for a circular economy on waste plastic bottles in Hong Kong. Resources, Conservation and Recycling 199, 107270.
  • Delina, L.L., Perez, O.A., Afable, S.B., Steuer, B. (2023). Do global public health crises change people's behaviors towards sustainability? Evidence of the COVID-19 and sustainability nexus from Hong Kong. Cleaner and Responsible Consumption 10,
  • Chen, P., Sauerwein, M. and Steuer, B.* (2023). Exploring greenhouse gas emission pathways and stakeholder perspectives: In search of circular economy policy innovation for waste paper management and carbon neutrality in Hong Kong. Journal of Environmental Management.
  • Zisopoulos*, F.K., Steuer, B., Abussafy, R., Toboso Chavero, S., Liu, Z., Tong, X., Schraven, D. (2023). Informal recyclers as stakeholders in a circular economy. Journal of Cleaner Production, doi:
  • Tong, X., Yu, H., Han, L., Liu, T., Dong, L., Zisopoulos, F., Steuer, B., & de Jong, M. (2023). Exploring business models for carbon emission reduction via post-consumer recycling infrastructures in Beijing: An agent-based modelling approach. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 188, 106666–.
  • Steuer, B. (2022). Hunting for hidden treasures: A research methodology on China's Informal recycling sector. In: Gille Z. and Lepawsky J. [eds.]: The Routledge Handbook of Waste Studies. New York & London, Routledge (in press)
  • Steuer, B. and Li H. (2022). An effective system for recovering recyclable waste from households in China: Ant Recovery’s bottom-up scheme in Changchun city. Waste Management (accepted for publication). Doi:
  • Steuer, B. (2022) Emerging Circular Economy SMEs in Hong Kong: What Is Needed to Invigorate the Dynamic? In: Ghadimi P., Gilchrist M.D., Xu M. [eds.]. Role of Circular Economy in Resource Sustainability (in press). Springer International Publishing. Doi : 10.1007/978-3-030-90217-9
  • Steuer, B., Staudner, M., Ramusch, R. (2021) Role and potential of the circular economy in managing end-of-life ships in China. Resources, Conservation and Recycling
    Volume 164, Doi:
  • Steuer, B. (2020). Governing China’s Informal Waste Collectors under Xi Jinping: Aligning Interests to Yield Effective Outcomes. Journal für Entwicklungspolitik Volume XXXVI (1), p. 61-87. Doi:
  • Steuer, B. (2020). Identifying effective institutions for China’s circular economy: Bottom-up evidence from waste management. Waste Management & Research (Online first). Doi:
  • Steuer, B., Ramusch, R., Salhofer, S. (2018) Is there a future for the informal recycling sector in urban China? DETRITUS - Multidisciplinary journal for Waste Resources and Residues Vol. 4, pp. 189-200. Doi:
  • Steuer, B., Ramusch, R., Salhofer, S. (2018) Can Beijing’s informal waste recycling sector survive amidst worsening circumstances? Resources, Conservation and Recycling, vol. 128, pp. 59-68. Doi:
  • Steuer, B., Ramusch, R., Part, F., Salhofer, S. (2017) Analysis of the value chain and network structure of informal waste recycling in Beijing, China. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, Volume 117, Part B. Doi:  
  • Steuer, B. (2017) Is China’s regulatory system on urban household waste collection effective? An evidence based analysis on the evolution of formal rules and contravening informal practices. Journal of Chinese Governance, vol. 2, issue 4, pp. 411-436. Doi: 
  • Schulz, Y. and Steuer, B. (2017) Dealing with discarded e-devices. In: Sternfeld, E. [eds.] Routledge Handbook China’s Environmental Policy, London and New York.
  • Shen, Y. and Steuer, B. (2017) Conflict or Cooperation: The Patterns of Interaction between State and Non-State Actors in China’s Environmental Governance. Editorial note for the Chinese Journal of Governance, vol. 2, issue 4, pp. 349-359. Doi: 
  • Salhofer, S., Steuer, B., Beigl, P., Ramusch, R. (2016) WEEE management in Europe and China - a comparison. Waste Management. Waste Management, 57. Doi:
  • Steuer, B. (2016) What Institutional Dynamics Guide Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Refurbishment and Reuse in Urban China? Recycling, 1(2), 286-310; doi: 10.3390/recycling1020286