La FAO y el FMAM

Una asociación para la agricultura sostenible y el medio ambiente

Advancing tenure security for forest landscape-dependent communities in Indonesia, Peru, and Uganda (GCS-Tenure)

Close to 240 million people across the globe live in forested regions, particularly in developing countries. Local communities manage a third of forests worldwide, and their livelihoods depend on forests for the provision of essential ecosystem services. Over the past two decades, many developing countries have revised land and forestry laws to provide greater recognition of local decision-making structures, indigenous territorial rights, and women's rights. While these reforms were intended to generate economic, social and environmental advances, outcomes have been uneven.

About the project

The GCS-Tenure project, implemented by FAO and executed by CIFOR, had field activities in Indonesia, Peru and Uganda. The project sought to improve the way forest and land tenure reforms are understood, communicated and used, so that decision-makers, practitioners and forest-dependent people in developing countries are well-equipped to develop and implement policies and initiatives that support tenure security, livelihoods and sustainable forest management.

Good practices for the project's success 

Drive participatory stakeholder engagement to leverage local know-how and bolster project sustainability over time 

The participative prospective analysis (PPA) approach sourced direct input from stakeholders and beneficiaries and increased the general understanding of forest tenure issues. The approach included a workshop in which participants from local communities, public authorities, experts and other stakeholders identified the key factors undermining land tenure security. Those factors were assessed and used as a basis for participants to envision different scenarios for land tenure policy improvement. The process resulted in evidence-based, actionable information to direct policy and action plans. Projects adopting participatory approaches can benefit significantly from an increased understanding of the specific circumstances and context within their area of intervention, tapping into the knowledge of local institutions, experts and communities, and developing a sharper picture of the issues to be addressed.

Share knowledge to accelerate progress and empower stakeholders

The project carried out knowledge-sharing and awareness-raising activities at the local, national, and global levels. Communities and policy-makers received training on a wide variety of topics, including: procedures for formalizing collective tenure rights, legal literacy and tenure security, gender issues, climate change, forest management and legal literacy. The project also created a significant number of guides and manuals to build capacity in the area of skills in tenure reform. Pooling knowledge from across sectors and disciplines can ensure a holistic approach to problem-solving and a more detailed understanding of the challenges to come. Projects should contribute to that shared pool of knowledge by releasing data, research and results, whether satisfactory or otherwise. This good practice is highly replicable, can help provide valuable insight beyond the scope of any single initiative, and should be employed by all projects seeking to facilitate the achievement of the SDGs.

Establish partnerships, including with local academia, to accelerate progress and strengthen the enabling environment

By establishing partnerships with universities across Indonesia, Peru and Uganda, the project was able to leverage considerable local knowledge on land tenure issues and tapped into established networks across the project’s field sites. In each country, the project engaged a post-doctoral research fellow tasked to coordinate between partners and to provide research skills benefitting stakeholders and the project itself. The partnerships were mutually beneficial as the universities incorporated the experience gained into their curricula. In Peru, for example, the Universidad Agraria La Molina established a new course based on data-collection and analysis methodologies used by the project. The University of Pattimura in Indonesia leveraged the tools developed by GCS-Tenure for teaching and socio-economic research.