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Participatory Monitoring of Forest Resources: Current Methodologies Being Developed in Thailand

Research reports

In response to demands from the Thailand government to demonstrate that community forestry was ecologically sustainable, the Regional Community Forestry Training Centre in Bangkok undertook an action research project to provide guidelines for participatory monitoring. As this paper reported, it quickly became clear that a fundamental question remained unanswered: for whom and for what were the guidelines really being developed? Neither of the primary stakeholders - villagers and the Royal Forest Department (RFD) - were fully committed to the project, and mistrust prevailed between them. The author commented that if the villagers' chief aim was to build credibility with the RFD, then scientific methods of monitoring might be more useful to them than local techniques.

Joanna Fuller