25 September 2015

Publication: Reconceptualizing the social contributions of community forestry as citizenship

New publication from the Department of Food and Resource Economics (IFRO).

This study proposes a more complete conceptualization of the social contributions of community forestry by employing the concept of citizenship. This conceptualization situates community forestry processes within the broader local development and institutional landscape, which promises a better understanding of community forestry's social contributions and role in local development. Looking at citizenship relations available with community forest user groups (CFUG) and local government in Nepal, this research shows that CFUGs offer a democracy refuge to citizens and valued services, yet that local government is perceived as more important. The comparison responds to debates on institutional pluralism, namely that the presence of multiple institutions appear not to 'fragment' local representation or service provision. The study also discusses how socio-economic characteristics influence citizenship relations. This article brings to light questions on how local institutions serve citizens and what the future holds for community forestry institutions that have evolved far beyond the forest.

Author: Rebecca Leigh Rutt

Find the publication here.