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Ballot Bin

By Hubbub UK


A cigarette butt voting ashtray that uses provocative questions to engage different audiences and nudge them dispose of their cigarette litter properly, by casting their vote.

Campaign Name: Ballot Bin
Delivered By: Hubbub UK
Designed By: Common Works
Main Objective: Behaviour change, community engagement
Type: Installations incl. art
Location: Urban
Cost: £0 - 250


A voting cigarette ashtray was installed near Embankment Station. Every week it posed a sporting question e.g. ‘Who is the best football player in the world?’ or ‘do you prefer the grand prix or tennis US open?’. It asked the user to ‘vote with their butt’, creating a live public poll.

Rationale: To test whether using competition and fun creates behaviour change. It played off rivalries and the competitive nature of sports fans, reflecting the audience we were trying to reach.

Public Participation: Our observational research showed that 29% of correct disposals corresponded to people using the voting bin whilst it was in situ. Its wider impact was huge, going viral on social media (more details in section 4.2). Following this we have had over 80 expressions of interest from around the world in replicating the bin.

Headline Finding

The behavioural observations found that cigarette butt littering decreased by 8% from before to during the campaign. At one point during the campaign cigarette littering behaviour did drop to a lowest point of an 18% reduction compared to baseline. This corresponds to the month when cigarette litter prevention activities took place at Villiers Street with 29% of the correct disposals corresponding to people using the voting bin provided by Hubbub.

Its wider impact was huge, going viral on social media (more details in section 4.2). Following this we have had over 80 expressions of interest from around the world in replicating the bin.

The Neat Streets project involved a series of activities at one single site throughout a six-month period, including the baseline. Given that many activities took place, often simultaneously and with no control site monitored, it is not possible to assess whether any particular project made a significant enough difference to support its replication elsewhere.


Permissions are required to install the bin. It's also necassary to think about:
• Who will maintain the ballot bin when in situ e.g. agreements with local cleansing teams.
• Checking if any formal product testing or compliance certification is required for your specific locality.

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