Get the CIFOR publications update

CIFOR publishes over 400 publications every year on forests and climate change, landscape restoration, rights, forest policy, agroforestry and much more in multiple languages.

Gender, institutions and sustainability in the context of forest decentralisation reforms in Latin America and East Africa

Gender, institutions and sustainability in the context of forest decentralisation reforms in Latin America and East Africa

Women’s participation in decision making at the user-group level and in forest committees has been demonstrated to have a positive impact on forest sustainability. For example, women’s participation enhances forest regeneration and reduces illegal harvesting through improved monitoring. Their presence in forest user groups increases the groups’ capacity to manage and resolve conflicts, which in turn increases the likelihood that resource users will comply with and respect harvesting and use rules. These insights have been especially useful in informing policy and project interventions designed to strengthen and amplify women’s participation. The research presented in this brief advances our knowledge of how women may influence forest management. It explores the different effects on forest management by groups with different male–female composition (i.e. female-dominated, mixed-gender and male-dominated user groups). The study investigates each type of group’s property rights to forest resources, harvesting preferences, participation in rule making, relative investments in forest management and the outcomes of these activities. The research, conducted in four countries in Latin America and East Africa, adopts a comparative approach, which is intended to identify synergies within regions and to create a learning environment that may lead to improved forest management.

Authors: Yan Sun; Mwangi, E.; Meinzen-Dick, R.

Topic: gender,tenure,forest policy,forest governance,CIFOR,property rights,harvesting,decentralization,gender relations

Geographic: Uganda,Bolivia,Kenya,Mexico

Series: CIFOR Infobrief no. 25

Pages: 8p

Publisher: Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), Bogor, Indonesia

Publication Year: 2010

DOI: 10.17528/cifor/003243

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Altmetric score:

Export Citation

Related viewing


CIFOR website usability survey

We're conducting research on our website and we'd love to hear from you about your experience on This will help us make improvements and prioritize new features. The survey should only take 5 minutes, and your responses are completely anonymous.

If you have any questions about the survey, please email us:

We really appreciate your input!

Start survey
I don’t want to participate
Remind me later