Forest governance assessment and monitoring

©FAO/Giulio NapolitanoGood forest governance has a central role in achieving sustainable forest management (SFM).  It is also critical to ensuring the effectiveness of schemes to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries (REDD) as well as of efforts to reduce illegal activities in the forest sector. Governance assessment and monitoring are essential tools in promoting reforms towards better forest governance.    

Governance is an evolving concept whose basic elements are widely recognized although its bounds and scope remain contested. While academic debates continue, the concept is being shaped and operationally defined through various initiatives using indicators to measure, monitor and assess governance at different levels, from project site to international levels.

Since early efforts starting in the 1990s, parameters for country governance quality assessments have been gradually moving from external to local or national assessments, relying less on international experts and more on national institutions and local expertise. Purely technical approaches are making way to better integration of political and managerial issues. In the forest sector, similar shifts are underway at a time when forest governance quality assessments are assuming greater significance in the context of global climate change discussions.

last updated:  Thursday, June 21, 2012