Focali

Sections
Avoided Deforestation and Agriculture: Insights from Cambodia into a Complex Relationship

Two photographs at the same community forestry boundary marker. Left: looking out at the state managed forest. Right: looking in at the community managed forest. Photo: Robin Biddulph

Avoided Deforestation and Agriculture: Insights from Cambodia into a Complex Relationship

Focali Brief 2011:07 by Robin Biddulph

Using the examples of two villages in Cambodia, this brief examines the long-established truth that communities have to be heavily forest-dependent to effectively protect forests.

Recent policy research on avoided deforestation has focused on encouraging policy makers to adopt a landscape perspective. This policy brief reinforces that general message and makes three specific points in relation to it:

  • Communities do not need to be heavily ‘forest-dependent’ to be effective stewards of forests.
  • Proximity to forest, and crucially, frequency of journeys through forests on non-forest related business may be crucial to effective forest management.
  • People with insecure access to agricultural land present a greater threat to forests than people with secure access to agricultural land.

The brief also reinforces another long-established truth, namely that forest management issues can never be only local or only technical, but must be addressed in their wider political and economic context.

The brief can be downloaded here.

Focalis newsletter

Fill out your name and e-mail and press subscribe.