MIGRATION AND FORESTS

People in motion, landscapes in transition

Why do people move? What impact does migration have on landscapes and forests? How do communities evolve as their demographics shift? In countries across Asia, Africa and Latin America, CIFOR is taking a closer look at migration and mobility: not only who is moving and where, but why, and how that choice affects land-use decisions, livelihood strategies, social dynamics, gender roles and forest management. This portal brings together the latest in CIFOR’s ongoing research on this relatively unexplored issue.

Linking migration, landscapes and forests

People have moved across landscapes for millenia. For some, it is a strategy to manage their natural resources, or simply a way of life. Others migrate to adapt to changing environmental conditions or to avoid climate shocks. And each year millions of people – especially men and youth – migrate within their country or abroad in search of better work, education, health care or security. Remittances sent home by migrant workers are transforming the economies of some countries, and although conflicts can arise as different populations mix, migration can also create new networks as knowledge and skills are shared.

Not enough is known about the impact these changes have on rural communities and their landscapes. As population dynamics shift, so may social norms and land management practices. Remittance flows and new networks can affect how people earn a living, their incentives to manage and conserve forests and trees, their expenditure patterns, and the impact of various forest management practices on different social groups. Yet forestry research and forest policy have largely ignored the ways migration, mobility, and remittance and knowledge flows affect land-use decisions.

With key partners, CIFOR scientists are working to improve our understanding of migration in various countries to improve the equity and effectiveness of forest management projects and policies. Research is underway in Peru, Indonesia, Nepal, Tajikistan, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Laos, and Vietnam – all countries where both forests and migration are important features.

Read more: Flyer     Annual report story

Media Contacts

We encourage media to contact our scientists and experts directly with interview requests or questions about the topic.

Habtemariam Kassa
Team Leader, Forests & Human Well-Being
Research Site(s):
Ethiopia
Languages:
English, French
Peter Cronkleton
Senior Scientist
Research Site(s):
Peru
Languages:
English, Portuguese, Spanish
Christopher Martius
Team Leader - Climate Change, Energy & LC
Research Site(s):
Tajikistan
Languages:
English, German, Portuguese, Spanish
Houria Djoudi
Senior Scientist
Research Site(s):
Burkina Faso and Tajikistan
Languages:
Arabic, English, French, German, Indonesian
Mathurin Zida
Scientist
Research Site(s):
Burkina Faso
Languages:
English, French
Bimbika Sijapati Basnett
Scientist/Gender Coordinator
Research Site(s):
Nepal and Indonesia
Languages:
English, Nepalese
Moira Moeliono
Senior Associate, Forests and Governance Programme
Research Site(s):
Indonesia, Laos and Vietnam
Languages:
Indonesian, English, Dutch
Kartika Sari Juniwaty
Quantitative Research Specialist
Research Site(s):
Indonesia
Languages:
Indonesian, English
I Made Sanjaya
Data Analyst
Research Site(s):
Indonesia
Languages:
Indonesian, English

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