International development assistance is increasingly concerned with good governance. Without good governance, countries are fighting a losing battle to reconcile poverty reduction with environmental objectives. Complicating matters, good governance encompasses a range of issues which can be intangible and hard to measure.
However, perhaps more than any other sector, the forest sector has long struggled with - and thereby given life to - a range of these issues. Experience in the forest sector clearly demonstrates how a combination of inappropriate regulation and weak governance can erode the assets of the poor and increase their vulnerability. What lessons can we learn from the pioneering governance reforms in the forest sector and how can we apply them to promote wider gains in good governance and pro-poor change?