Director General’s Blog
Scaling up sustainability: time for forestry to come out of the forest

In his first blog as Director General for CIFOR, Peter Holmgren, examines the false dichotomy that forests have to be sacrificed for the sake of food security. Instead he stresses “these differing sustainability objectives can actually support each other”. Healthy and resilient landscapes, reduced environmental impact from agriculture, and improved marketing opportunities for land-based products are all parts of the same sustainability equation, he argues.

Other blogs by the DG:

Science Dispatch
Forests or Agriculture: not necessarily an ‘all or nothing’ trade-off

Making informed decisions on how to reduce carbon emissions from forestry and agriculture requires some solid knowledge about potential tradeoffs between development and conservation objectives: what you manage to win through avoided deforestation or reduced cropping emissions has to be weighed against possible farm income losses when first-best farming strategies have to be sacrificed. In this Science Dispatch, CIFOR scientists, Sven Wunder and Jan Börner weigh up the potential trade offs and recommend several criteria that policy makers must consider when looking to invest in different climate mitigation options.

Related publications:

U.N. recognises new guidelines to better manage competing demands for land

A new set of ‘best practice guidelines’ aiming to inform policy makers on how to balance competing pressures on land for food and fuel while protecting forests and biodiversity have been taken into consideration by the UN Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD) in Hyderabad held last week. ‘Landscapes’ are a fairly new way of considering the management of land based on the social, economic and environmental services it provides.

Related blogs:

Research program joins forces with the United Nations to help world meet 2020 deforestation goals

The CGIAR Forests, Trees and Agroforestry research program has agreed to join forces with the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) as part of a broader goal to cut the rate of deforestation in half by the end of the decade and to promote sustainable management of farms and forests. Robert Nasi, director of the program co-signed the memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the CBD Secretariat at Tree Diversity Day, held on the sidelines of this week’s 11th Conference of the Parties in Hyderabad, India.

Read all the stories from Hyderabad here.

Related blogs:

Second generation of biofuels could give forests a break

Biofuels have been criticised for propelling deforestation, but a second generation of this energy source may have the potential to supply a larger proportion of our fuel sustainably, experts say. Second generation biofuels - those derived from woody crops, agricultural residues, waste and inedible crops, are often better for the environment and more fuel efficient than their earlier cousins, said Francis Johnson, the lead author of a new report in this CIFOR blog during ‘Forest Week’ run by the Responding to Climate Change website (RTCC).

Related blog:

Register now for Forest Day 6

In less than a month, delegates from 193 countries will converge in Doha, Qatar for the 18th Conference of Parties (COP 18) of the UNFCCC. Forest Day 6, which will be held on the sidelines of COP 18 on December 2, seeks to inform the debate on forests through a strong line-up of speakers and discussions touching on issues of climate change and sustainable development. Registration for Forest Day 6 is now open but space is limited so register in the next few days to avoid disappointment.

Sharing land with tigers in Nepal

“Is land sharing land between humans and top predators even possible?” asks CIFOR scientist Amy Ickowitz in this month’s POLEX. Continuing the debate as to whether ‘land sharing’ (the use of wildlife-friendly and sustainable land use practices), or ‘land sparing’ (intensifying agricultural production so that some land can be set aside for wildlife) is the best way to maintain global biodiversity, Amy draws on a recent study by Carter et al. examining the role that top predators play in regulating ecosystems, leading to greater biodiversity. In his study, he looks at the ability of tigers to coexist with humans inside and outside of Nepal’s Chitwan National Park.

Related publications:

Upcoming events

The 2012 Conference on Sustainable Business in Asia
1 - 3 November 2012, Bangkok, Thailand. more

Biannual IUFRO Forest Landscape Ecology Conference: Sustaining Humans and Forests in Changing Landscapes
5 - 12 November 2012, Sonesta Hotel, Concepción, Chile. more

The 15th International Anti Corruption Conference (IACC)
7 - 10 November 2012, Brasília, Brazil. more

American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting
14 - 18 November 2012, San Francisco Hilton and Towers, San Francisco, California, United States. more

Events calendar


5 new job vacancies at CIFOR this month.
Click Here.


CIFOR advances human wellbeing, environmental conservation and equity by conducting research to inform policies and practices that affect forests in developing countries. CIFOR is a CGIAR Consortium Research Center. CIFOR's headquarters are in Bogor, Indonesia and it also has offices in Asia, Africa and South America.

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The context

Biofuel Investments in Sub-Saharan Africa:A Review of the Early Legal and Institutional Framework in Zambia


REDD+ politics in the media: A case study from Nepal

The context

Cameroon's hidden harvest: Commercial chainsaw logging, corruption, and livelihoods


CIFOR’s research on forest tenure and rights


Integrating gender into forestry research: A guide for CIFOR scientists and programme administrator


Women, men and forest research A review of approaches, resources and methods for addressing gender


Adaptation et atténuation en Guinée équatoriale

The context

Development of a village-level livelihood monitoring tool: A case-study in Viengkham District, Lao PDR

Vacancies at CIFOR

Senior Scientist, Forest Ecology and Forest Management


Scientist, Impact Assessment


Scientist, Restoration and Plantation Forestry


Scientist, Global Comparative Study on REDD+ (GCS REDD+)


Post Doctoral Fellow, ASEAN Social Forestry Networks (ASFN)

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