Initiatives on assessing sustainability: status and future directions. Summary of the Open Session of the Third International Project Advisory Panel (IPAP) meeting on Testing Criteria and Indicators for Sustainable Management of Forests, Turrialba, Costa Rica, February 29 - March 1, 1996. CIFOR/ CATIE Special Publication

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In a year marked by several formal expert-level meetings on certification of forest management and criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management (C&I), most of which were related to the mandate of the Inter-governmental Panel on Forests (IPF), CIFOR and CATIE decided to lead off by hosting an informal meeting of experts from a cross-section of important certification and C&I initiatives. Our desire was to facilitate an effective exchange of information between these initiatives, providing feedback to CIFOR, CATIE and other research institutions involved in the development of sustainability assessment methods and with a view to preparing the ground for subsequent IPF-related meetings in Kuala Lumpur, Brisbane, Bonn and Helsinki. The meeting was conducted under the umbrella of the International Project Advisory Panel (IPAP) of CIFOR's project on "Testing criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management". This CIFOR/CATIE special publication is a report of the meeting. It contains an essay-type summary of the major points raised at the meeting and short summaries of twelve presentations made during panel discussions. The conclusions of this meeting will hopefully be an aid to other groups working on sustainability assessment and C&I.

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