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In March 2001, the FAO Committee on Forestry (COFO) requested FAO to assist countries in incorporating linkages between sustainable forest management and other sectors, including agriculture. COFO also requested that FAO develop effective national policy frameworks and national forestry programmes, promoting information exchange between forestry and related sectors.

As a result of this demand coming from FAO member countries, the Forestry Policy and Information Division of the Forestry Department initiated a series of studies on available information and research needs, developed seven country case studies and organized a technical meeting1 in September 2002 in FAO, Rome, to discuss these inputs.

The objectives of the present paper are:

• to present current policy and legal frameworks to help better understand cross-sectoral policy impacts;

• to present examples of specific country issues and solutions;

• to indicate instruments and institutions arrangements useful in order to optimize policy impacts according to forest development stages;

• to show the integrated system of environmental and economic accounting as a tool to collect, analyze, monitor and evaluate information on policy impacts across sectors; and

• to indicate ways and means to enhance the capacity of actors to coordinate their policy roles through better information and knowledge sharing and participation.

The target audiences are policy analysts as well as policy-makers, forest managers, representatives from stakeholders and non-governmental organizations, and researchers and teachers who need information on this subject and have to deal with cross-sectoral policy issues in their daily work. The public in general, concerned with the sustainable management of forests and their contribution to people’s well-being, is another important target group.

The publication was prepared under the leadership of Manuel Paveri, Chief, Policy and Institutions Service of the Forestry Department of FAO. Yves C. Dubé, Forestry Officer, has coordinated the work and contributed substantially to the publication. Many officers from within and outside FAO have also contributed to the process and made suggestions to improve the manuscript. The authors of the chapters are Franz Schmithüsen from the Department of Forest Sciences of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Davide Pettenella from the Territorial and Agroforestry Systems Department of the University of Padova, William F. Hyde, CIFOR Research Associate, Glenn-Marie Lange from the Institute for Economic Analysis of New York University, and Margaret A. Shannon from the University of Buffalo School of Law. Ms Eileen Nolan provided editorial assistance along the various drafts of the manuscript and Mr Marco Perri assisted in the preparation of the CD-Rom.

Those involved in preparing or taking policy decisions concerning sustainable forest management may use this publication as a reference framework. It is hoped that the approaches recommended will be widely adopted. The Forestry Department will continue to document progress of country members in this field and develop further concepts, methodologies and tools to be used by countries to deal with this issue.

R. Michael Martin
Forestry Policy and Information Division
Forestry Department

1 Reports of country case studies and proceedings of the technical meeting are presented in Appendix on CD-Rom.

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