'A well written book, astutely organized.' Development and Change Local Forest Management is built around careful and illuminating case studies of the effects of devolution policies on the management of forests in several Asian countries. The studies demonstrate that devolution policies - contrary to the claims of governments - actually increased governmental control over the management of local resources and did so at lower cost. The controversial findings show that if local forest users are to exercise genuine control over forest management, they must be better represented in the processes of forming, implementing and evaluating devolution policies. In addition, the guiding principle for policy discussions should be to create sustainable livelihoods for local resource users, especially the poorest among them, rather than reducing the cost of government forest administration. This book is essential reading for forest and other natural resource managers, policy makers, development economists and forestry professionals and researchers.
'This is an important book. Devolution of responsibility and authority for forest management has become a worldwide tred in forest policy. This book presents a well-documented and well-argued case showing that devolution often has the opposite effect from that intended'. R.J Fisher, Australian Mekong Resource Centre, University of Sydney. International Pest Control, March-April 2004.
Foreword by M S Swaminathan * Preface * Glossary of Local Terms * Introduction * The Promises and Limitations of Devolution and Local Forest Management in China * Devolution as a Threat to Democratic Decision-making in Forestry? Findings from Three States in India * Creating Space for Local Forest Management: The Case of the Philippines * Whose Devolution is it Anyway? Divergent Constructs, Interests and Capacities Between the Poorest Forest Users and States * Conclusion * Notes * References * Index