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Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) Toolbox

Forest Tenure

Welcome to the Forest Tenure Module, which is intended for people involved in forest-tenure reforms or who are charged with implementing or facilitating SFM in forests under varying or contested tenure arrangements.

This module provides insights into issues related to forest-tenure systems and governance; key tools for analysing tenure systems, identifying stakeholder perspectives on tenure and assessing tenure governance arrangements and practices; and case studies on the practical application of such tools.

The type and extent of forest tenure reforms in South Asia vary across countries. Yet, all reforms share common objectives of addressing greater equity, realizing communities’ rights, improving livelihoods and promoting conservation. Some other noted commonalities include the state retaining majority ownership of forests while still increasing community tenure and rights, and the emergence...
This infobrief summarizes the findings of a five-year process (2011-16) that explored how to strengthen women’s rights to forests and trees and increase their participation in forest decision making and benefits capture. It presents insights from the implementation of Adaptive Collaborative Management (ACM), an approach tested in different cultural settings. ACM...
To increase forest farmers’ income and promote the rapid development of collective forest areas, China has implemented reforms of its collective forest tenure system since 2003. The main thrusts of these reforms have been clarifying property rights, reducing taxes, liberalizing business operations, and regulating the transfer of rights over forest...
In 2011, the European Forest Institute Central-East European Regional Office (EFICEEC) conducted a study for FAO to improve knowledge on the origins, evolution and current situation of forest owners’ associations and cooperatives in selected Eastern European countries, assess their effectiveness, and analyse lessons learned from experience of legislation, policies, strategies,...
The document is a policy brief based on a series of reviews commissioned by FAO to increase understanding about the role of forest tenure in African countries and to provide information for the Global Forest Resources Assessment.
This brief is based on the results of an intensive study carried out by FAO, in collaboration with the Asia Forest Partnership, to elicit data and indicators that would give more quantifiable evidence of the impact of various tenure regimes in South and Southeast Asia. The study, Understanding forest tenure...
In developing countries, support structures for forest associations either do not exist or fail to reach those who need help most. It is this lack of “connectedness” that the “Forest Connect” initiative (coordinated jointly by FAO and IIED in 13 partner countries) addresses. More specifically, Forest Connect aims to better...
Does forest tenure matter? In what way does it matter? What are the links among tenure, sustainable forest management and poverty alleviation? This paper presents the main findings of research that was conducted by FAO with the aim of analysing and understanding the role of tenure arrangements, their...