Why are criteria and indicators important?

Criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management are an efficient framework to help countries collect, store and disseminate reliable and scientifically based information on forests, in order to monitor and assess the state of forests.

Criteria and indicators help building bridges between stakeholders in the forestry domain; they are useful in informing policy makers and in communicating with the public. In turn, this information is a means to influence policies and decisions to achieve Sustainable forest management.

At the international level, criteria and indicators help countries to prepare consistent and solid national reports for international organisations, UN conventions and legally-binding agreements related to forests such as:

  • the Global Forest Resources Assessment  FRA
  • the Convention on Biological Diversity CBD
  • the Convention to Combat Desertification CCD
  • the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora CITES
  • the Commission on Sustainable Development CSD
  • the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development OECD
  • the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change UNFCCC
  • the United Nations Forum on Forests UNFF
  • the World Heritage Convention WHC

    At the national level, criteria and indicators are useful tools for:

  • monitoring the efficiency and effectiveness of National Forest Programmes and other related policy processes.
  • They serve as a framework for assisting strategic planning, setting goals and monitoring sustainable forest management plans and certification schemes.

 Therefore their inclusion in the National forest resources assessments is crucial.

last updated:  Thursday, October 2, 2014