|Project leader||Himlal Baral|
Forests are vital for sustainable development. However, forest landscapes in Southeast Asia are changing rapidly and are under increasing pressure from economic development, climate change, demographic shifts, conflicts over tenure and land use, and other stressors. To ensure forest landscapes are managed in a sustainable manner, good forest landscape governance is vital.
A weak interface within science policy and practice on forest landscape governance is a core issue facing the sustainable development of forest landscapes. A number of interrelated reasons are at play, such as: limited interactions among researchers, policy makers, and practitioners; limited availability of evidence to contribute to policy making; minimal engagement of local communities in research related to forest landscapes; accessibility of sound and relevant research products for policy makers; and impractical policy recommendations.
Local universities are best placed to lead co-creation of knowledge to improve policies and practices of forest landscapes; however, most universities in the region have limited capacity and funding gaps in designing, implementing and communicating research on this topic.
In this project, RECOFTC and CIFOR address these challenges by developing the capacities of universities and researchers from low and middle income countries in Southeast Asia. The project aims to improve their ability to conduct quality and transformative research, as well as leverage that research to support policy development and behavioral change at various levels leading to more equitable, community-oriented forest governance.