CIDT staff Sarah Thomas and Richard Nyirenda have recently returned from Papua New Guinea where they were delivering a two week training course on ‘Improving Forest Governance’ as part of the EU/Birdlife International project ‘Strengthening Non State Actor Involvement in Forest Governance in Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Papua New Guinea‘.
The Papua New Guinea course was designed for staff and key local stakeholders of the national partner organisation ‘Tenkile Conservation Alliance’ (TCA) and was held at their remote base in Lumi, in the Torricelli Mountain range. TCA is doing groundbreaking work, combining conservation with community development, to protect the region’s rainforest and biodiversity, including critically endangered species such as the Tenkile and Weimang tree kangaroos.
The first week of the course, attended by 40 TCA staff and local and provincial government representatives, explored key governance concepts and challenges including strategies for ensuring greater involvement of civil society and communities in forest sector policy decisions. Topics covered included forest governance assessment, corruption, climate change and REDD+. Course participants also discussed the importance of effective multi-stakeholder processes at all decision-making levels, and reflected on ways to improve the representation of forest dependent communities, including through enhanced advocacy, influencing and networking.
The second week of the course was a Training of Trainers delivered to 25 TCA staff, including community outreach and research officers, supporting them in the design and delivery of tailored training inputs for other groups. Staff worked on the design of courses on climate change, water, sanitation and health, and good governance, adapting materials and methodology to target community audiences.
Photos from the course
CIDT bid farewell to the 46 participants of the 2015 Improving Forest Governance, who returned to their 22 countries of origin to put new learning into practice. Mr Hugh Speechly closed the IFG course on behalf of the European Forestry Institute (EFI), one of the key course sponsors, along with DFID. Hugh emphasised six broad dimensions of governance, including voice and accountability, rule of law, control of corruption and regulatory quality. Echoing a recent Chatham House report, he noted that Governance reforms in many producer countries have slowed and getting back on track will require a step change in political commitment and willingness to tackle more difficult governance issues. Applying governance trends to participants’ own countries, he challenged the participants on what they could do to make a difference upon their return.
In the final weeks of the course, participants chose from optional modules on Forests and Climate Change, Training of Trainers, Project Proposal Writing and Gender in Forest Governance. These modules were designed deepen knowledge, but also to equip participants to share learning upon return. Working with a personal tutor, each participant developed a personal action plan, detailing concrete practical steps to contribute to improving forest governance upon return home.
CIDT wishes all alumni well and look forward to connecting again in six months, when we follow up on participant action plans and impact.
Images from the closing day of IFG 2015
International Forest Governance practitioners learn from the experience of Rwanda in climate compatible development
Mr Alex Mulisa, Coordinator of FONERWA, the Government of Rwanda National Fund for Environment and Climate Change visited Telford this Summer to speak to the Improving Forest Governance 2015 course.
Community or state-managed forestry? The Improving Forest Governance participants visit Cannock Chase and Wales to find out more
As part of the 6-week Improving Forest Governance course, 46 participants from 22 timber producing and processing countries undertook three field visits to Wales, Cannock Chase and Lathams Timber Yard.
Long Wood Community Woodland
On 13 June 2015 the IFG group headed to rural west Wales to visit a community woodland group. Long Wood Community Woodland is a 121 hectare site regarded as Plantation on Ancient Woodland (PAWS), which lies just north of Lampeter in County Ceredigion. Long Wood is a long-established group that has faced many challenges but remain a strong and cohesive group. IFG participants were hosted by the managing board and the staff for talks, and received tours of the woodland, sawmill and crafts with the local community group members.
The key themes of the study visit were to look at: how community forest management differs from state control; and look at the opportunities for communities to generate income from a woodland as a social enterprise. The group stayed in Aberystwyth, and were hosted by the community in the evening and received a wonderful performance from Cwmann & District Male Voice Choir.
Download the Long Wood Field Trip Guide.
On 18 Jun 2015 the IFG participants visited Cannock Chase to find out how the public forest estate is managed in England. Cannock Chase forest is a public (government) forest managed by the Forestry Commission (FC), and is utilized for recreational purposes, timber production and conservation. The IFG group met local staff to find out how key long term decisions are taken and implemented, and in particular to hear about how forest management planning handles competing priorities for the long-term benefit of both people and the environment.
The key themes of this study visit were to look at the governance of public forests in England; forest management planning and consultation; certification of timber, recreation and the social role of public forests and how the FC responds to climate change.
- Download the Cannock Chase Field Trip Guide.
- Download the Cannock Chase PowerPoint presentation given by Alastair Semple
- View Cannock Chase Forest Plans and Forestry Commission publications.
Latham’s Timber Yard
On 17th June as part of the module on Developing Trade Incentives, IFG participants were hosted by James Latham’s Timber Yard, in Dudley. The theme of the visit was to learn about how a UK company imports sustainable and legal timber, and the processes and systems through which that is realized.
CIDT’s Improving Forest Governance participants take part in the Illegal Logging Update at Chatham House
CIDT was proud to take our 46 Improving Forest Governance (IFG) participants to the 25th Illegal Logging Update and Stakeholder Consultation Meeting at Chatham House on 25th June.