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Accommodating multiple interests in forestry

Pluralism and sustainable forestry and rural development. Proceedings of an international workshop. 1999. Rome, FAO. ISBN 92-5-004250-7.

Many diverse groups have interests in the future of forests, from the scientific community to private firms, public sector forestry services to local and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), youth groups to unions. A major issue facing forestry is not whether to accommodate multiple interests, but how.

Pluralism and sustainable forestry and rural development

Although there is a growing set of tools, platforms and methods for both the assessment of multiple interests and the building of collaborative mechanisms, more research, including comparative analysis and detailed case studies, is needed. Accommodating multiple interests in forestry will be difficult, and agreements may be temporary and lack consensus. Further improvements in this area are imperative for sustainable forest management.

To address this need, the FAO Forestry Department organized an International Workshop on Pluralism and Sustainable Forestry and Rural Development, held in Rome from 9 to 12 December 1997. The 35 participants represented different organizational types, all geographical regions and many disciplines. The purpose of the workshop was to exchange information and explore mechanisms and methods for optimizing the cooperation between different actors in the forestry sector -governments, NGOs, people's organizations, the private sector, etc. - to promote sustainable forestry and rural development.

The workshop identified principles and processes of decentralized management and a multipartner approach, and it made concrete recommendations for the next steps.

The workshop and these proceedings were supported by the International Cooperation Centre on Agrarian Research for Development (CIRAD) and the International Union of Forestry Research Organizations (IUFRO) Working Group on the Socio-economic Aspects of Forestry in Developing Countries.

The proceedings are grouped into a general introduction and six additional sections: Operational and analytical tools and methods; Communication and learning; Institutional issues; Policy issues; Technical issues; and Other contributions.

Unasylva Vol. 49, No. 194 (Accommodating multiple interests in forestry) contained adaptations of several of the major papers presented in the workshop.

Strengthening country capacities for realizing effective forestry policy

Forest policies in the Caribbean. Vol. 1, Proceedings of the Expert Consultation, Vol. 2, Reports of 28 selected countries and territories. 1998. FAO Forestry Paper Nos 137/1 and 137/2. Rome, FAO. ISBN 92-5-104232-2; ISBN 92-5-104233-0.

These two volumes are the result of a regional study on forestry policy in the Caribbean carried out by the FAO Forestry Policy and Planning Division in cooperation with the Commission of the European Communities (DG VIII-Development). The study covers 28 countries of the Caribbean region with a combined total population of 33 million people and a forest area of almost 40 million ha.

Volume 1 is divided into two parts. The first part of the volume deals directly with the expert consultation on Forestry Policies in the Caribbean, held in Trinidad and Tobago in May, 1998. It contains an executive summary, the Resolution of the Expert Consultation and reports or summaries on technical sessions and working groups. This part of the volume concludes with an overview and assessment.

Forest policies in the Caribbean. Vol. 1

The second part of Volume 1 is divided into six chapters and consists of analysis and synthesis of 28 country studies, the full reports of which are presented in Volume 2. The first chapter deals with background and objectives, as well as project development. Chapter 2 covers the current forestry policy situation in the region. In Chapter 3, the main forestry policy issues in two sets of countries in the Caribbean (large countries and small islands) are identified. Chapter 4 discusses the process of policy formation in different countries as well as aspects of forestry legislation. Chapter 5 deals with forestry institutions in the region and the implications of decentralization, the status of forest policy research and the challenges of building national capacity for forest policy formulation. Chapter 6 deals with opportunities for action.

Prior to the Expert Consultation, between June 1997 and May 1998, reports on the forest policies of 28 countries and territories were prepared. Volume 2 contains these country reports. While most of the reports are in English, a few are in Spanish (Cuba and the Dominican Republic) or French (Haiti).

The main issues and strategic areas identified by the countries involved in this study include -among others - land use planning, deforestation, sustainable forest management, people's participation, rights of indigenous peoples and local communities, policy evaluation, development of tourism and raising public awareness of the environment. It is argued that institutional aid and government efforts should focus on these areas to ensure greater effectiveness in addressing the needs of the country concerned and to enhance national capacity for forestry policy analysis.

The results of the study provide guidelines for follow-up action by governments and international organizations in the region, aimed at strengthening country capacities for analysis and formulation of forestry policy and effectiveness in policy implementation. One of the study's main conclusions is that, to date, forest policy has been reactive. It is argued that a more proactive approach (with more attention to monitoring, performance assessment and scenario preparation) is needed.

Forest policies in the Caribbean. Vol. 2

A case study on non-timber forest products from India

Economics and management of nontimber forest products - a case study of Gujarat, India. D.D. Tewari. 1998. New Delhi, Oxford and IBH. ISBN 81-204-1235-4.

Historically, forest management in India, as in other countries, has been focused on timber outputs; non-timber forest products (NTFPs), including fuel and fodder biomass, grasses, oils, resins and medicinal herbs, have generally been relegated to the status of byproducts of the timber production process. With the notable increase in revenues from NTFPs or "minor forest products" - in some cases reaching the levels of timber sales - several states in India have established state forest development corporations to organize the collection and marketing of NTFPs professionally. The objectives were to eliminate intermediaries so that the maximum benefits would be transferred to the tribal people or rural poor who collect the NTFPs; to bring about qualitative and quantitative improvement in the marketing and trade of NTFPs; and to exploit NTFPs on a sustainable basis.

Economics and management of nontimber forest products - a case study of Gujarat, India.

This case study covers a wide range of issues related to the collection, processing and marketing of NTFPs in Gujarat, India, and scrutinizes the role of the Gujarat State Forest Development Corporation in carrying out these operations. The study raises issues related to the economic and management aspects of the harvesting and processing of these products and suggests that uniform policy guidelines be applied throughout the country to ensure sustainable extraction of this resource. The text highlights the following specific issues:

· issues related to production of NTFPs;

· collection and marketing aspects;

· the possibilities for value addition;

· institutional issues, in particular the economics of the Gujarat State Forest Development Corporation;

· a framework for developing an economic policy for NTFPs;

· policy recommendations.

It is hoped that the study will be of interest to policy-makers and researchers and a good reference for students of forestry.

A historical look at management of tropical forests for timber production

Tropical moist silviculture and management: a history of success and failure. H. Colyear Dawkins and Michael S. Philip. 1998. Wallingford, UK, CAB International. ISBN 0-85199-255-2.

The future of tropical forests is the subject of one of the great scientific and public debates of the late twentieth century. History provides evidence of both sustainable and destructive forestry practices in these forests. This study traces and analyses the history of successes and failures in the management and silviculture of tropical moist forests, from the first efforts at management for timber production about two centuries ago, through the growth of global exploitation and the onset of popular concern in the 1970s, up to the mid-1990s.

The text was begun by Colyear Dawkins and completed after his death by Michael S. Philip. Based on each author's 50 years of experience in the field and extensive research of the relevant literature, this book provides information -much of it previously unavailable-on the development of silvicultural systems in tropical moist forests. The authors provide detailed examples from many countries, pointing out the particular economic, ecological and social implications. Rather than accepting the position of ecologists and economists who claim that humanity has not yet learned to manage the tropical moist forests sustainably for timber, or certainly not in a manner likely to be economic, the authors show that the techniques for perpetuating and managing the forests were known more than half a century ago; they attribute forest degradation instead to uncontrolled population growth.

Tropical moist silviculture and management: a history of success and failure

The book is essential reading for forest managers in the tropics and for advanced students and researchers in forestry and ecology concerned with natural resource management. It will also be of interest to economists, policy-makers and environmentalists.

The potential of forest industry in the Russian Federation

The forest industrial sector of Russia - opportunity awaiting. Charles A. Backman. 1998. New York and London, Parthenon Publishing Group. ISBN 1-85070-661-1.

The International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), the Russian Academy of Sciences and the Russian Federal Forest Service, in agreement with the Russian Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources, signed agreements in 1992 and 1994 to carry out a large-scale study on the Siberian forest sector. The overall objective of the study was to identify policy options that would encourage sustainable development of the sector. The goals were to assess Siberia's forest resources, forest industries and infrastructure; to examine the forest's economic, social and biosphere functions; and with these in mind, to identify possible pathways for their sustainable development and to translate these pathways into policy options for Russian and international agencies.

Components of the study include analysis of the forest industry and markets, greenhouse gas balances, forest resources and forest utilization, biological diversity, landscapes and bioproductivity, non-wood products and functions, environmental status, transportation infrastructure and socio-economics.

Phase I of the study concentrated on the generation of extensive and consistent databases for the whole forest sector of Siberia and the Russian Federation overall. Phase II involved preparation of analysis and background papers based on the data collected. Phase III will involve dissemination of the outcome of the study through a series of policy workshops.

The current volume was produced as a contribution to Phase II. After a review of the forest sector, separate chapters explore regional diversity in forest resources and utilization in the economic regions of European Russia, West Siberia, East Siberia and the Far East. Subsequent chapters look at the trade patterns of the Russian Federation and the republics of the former Soviet Union and the analytical methodology used to consider possible future developments in the forest sector. In the concluding chapters, a number of scenarios are discussed and policy implications and areas for future research are presented. Statistics are presented in an Annex.

The forest industrial sector of Russia - opportunity awaiting

This book adds to the growing body of knowledge describing the Russian forest resources and their use at a time of structural change. It should appeal to a broad cross-section of readers, including those focusing on industrial forestry, environmentalists and academics.

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