New Publication: National socioeconomic surveys in forestry

27 October 2016, Rome - A new publication launched today marks a landmark contribution to data collection on the socioeconomic benefits of the world’s forests. Entitled National socioeconomic surveys in forestry: guidance and survey modules for measuring the multiple roles of forests in household welfare and livelihoods, the publication aims to help capture the true value of forests and trees in order to better understand their roles in reducing food insecurity, supporting sustainable livelihoods, alleviating poverty and contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“The socioeconomic benefits of forests and their role in global development have been systematically overlooked in the past due to a lack of consistent data,” said FAO Team Leader of Forest Governance and Economics, Thaís Linhares-Juvenal. “This publication will help close the information gap on the relationship between household welfare and forests by generating precise, comparable and reliable data, which in turn should lead to more evidence-based policy-making.”

The publication targets primarily national statistical offices and other relevant governmental agencies in national household surveys, but can also be used for research purposes. The modules can be adapted at country to be used as part of existing national household surveys or carried out as a specific household survey on the contributions of forests and wild products to livelihoods. Topics such as energy, health, employment, and food and nutrition are covered. The results of pilot tests in Indonesia, Tanzania and Nepal are included.

The publication is the result of a three-year collaboration between the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), the International Forestry Resources and Institutions (IFRI) Network, and the World Bank's Living Standards Measurement Study (LSMS) team and Program on Forests (PROFOR).

It adds to the survey design resource material being developed and disseminated by the LSMS team and builds upon CIFOR’s Poverty Environment Network (PEN) surveys and the Poverty-Forests Linkages Toolkit developed by PROFOR. It also draws lessons from other surveys, including those of IFRI and FAO’s National Forest Monitoring and Assessment and FAO-Finland programmes.

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last updated:  Thursday, October 27, 2016