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Community Involvement in Forest Management: a Full-Scale Experiment in the South Cameroon forest

Research reports

In Cameroon, local community involvement in the process of forest management is a requirement. Within the specific context of the Tropenbos Cameroon Programme, an approach has been developed to achieve this. After a varied phase of awareness-raising, the principal users of a 42,500 ha ecosystem were brought together to discuss the uses to which this forest land would be put, and its boundaries. It is this experience, from the initial negotiating conditions to the final result, which is described in this paper. It shows how a strategic group of local stakeholders was able to force players at the macro-level to comply with its point of view concerning the management of the forest. In order to avoid increased competition for both land and resources, an integrated mode of forest management is proposed, which goes beyond the administrative distinction between permanent and non-permanent forest estate.

Alexandre Emerit, Guillaume Lescuyer, Edouard Essiane Mendoula, Joseph Junior She