What is a Right to Repair?

The UK is currently one of the largest producers of household e-waste in the world. When broken or unwanted electronics are dumped in landfill, toxic substances like lead and mercury can leach into soil and water. So how did we get here, with a mountain of electronic waste? Watch “The Story of Stuff on Electronics: Designed for the Dump” (an 8 minute video) to learn more about the problem and what we can do about it. With these problems in mind, a number of London based initiatives are trying to change our relationship with electronic goods, and develop a right to repair, as well as electronics repair skills. More information below.

UCL Big Repair Project

University College London is seeking to develop a “Right to Repair”, and is looking for helpers with its Big Repair Project. The first part of the project is a short survey about your opinion and behaviour towards the maintenance and repair of home appliances and electronics. See Participant Information for details. The second part is an optional Logbook to share a few details about your maintenance and repair experiences. See Logbook Guidelines for details. The study is ongoing until December 2024 under its current research funding programme. The website also contains a number of other useful resources and links.

The Restart Project

The Restart Project runs regular Restart Parties where people teach each other how to repair their broken and slow devices – from tablets to toasters, from iPhones to headphones. They work with schools and organisations to help them value and use their electronics for longer. And they use the data and stories we collect to help demand better, more sustainable electronics for all.

At present, there are no repair cafes for electrical equipment in Ealing, the closest being events in Marlow and Ruislip. Maybe you could be the first to start an Ealing Restart party? Contact the Restart Project here.

The Restart Project’s “Repair Directory”

The Repair Directory lists reliable repair businesses of electrical and electronic products across London. It primarily covers North and East London, as well as Lambeth, where Restart is based. They are hoping to expand the directory to West London and beyond, by receiving recommendations of additional businesses for inclusion. Can you help? Add names to the directory via the Restart project website here.

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