Community forest management in Indonesia: avoided deforestation in the context of anthropogenic and climate complexities

Santika, Truly, Meijaard, Erik, Budiharta, Sugeng, Law, Elizabeth A., Kusworo, Ahmad, Hutabarat, Joseph A., Indrawan, Tito P., Struebig, Matthew, Raharjo, Sugeng, Huda, Imanul, Sulhani, Ekaputri, Andini D. , Trison, Soni, Stigner, Madeleine and Wilson, Kerrie A. (2017) Community forest management in Indonesia: avoided deforestation in the context of anthropogenic and climate complexities. Global Environmental Change, 46 60-71. doi:10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2017.08.002

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Author Santika, Truly
Meijaard, Erik
Budiharta, Sugeng
Law, Elizabeth A.
Kusworo, Ahmad
Hutabarat, Joseph A.
Indrawan, Tito P.
Struebig, Matthew
Raharjo, Sugeng
Huda, Imanul
Ekaputri, Andini D.
Trison, Soni
Stigner, Madeleine
Wilson, Kerrie A.
Title Community forest management in Indonesia: avoided deforestation in the context of anthropogenic and climate complexities
Journal name Global Environmental Change   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0959-3780
Publication date 2017-09-01
Year available 2017
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2017.08.002
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 46
Start page 60
End page 71
Total pages 12
Place of publication Kidlington, Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Pergamon Press
Language eng
Subject 2306 Global and Planetary Change
3305 Geography, Planning and Development
2303 Ecology
2308 Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
Abstract Community forest management has been identified as a win-win option for reducing deforestation while improving the welfare of rural communities in developing countries. Despite considerable investment in community forestry globally, systematic evaluations of the impact of these policies at appropriate scales are lacking. We assessed the extent to which deforestation has been avoided as a result of the Indonesian government's community forestry scheme, Hutan Desa (Village Forest). We used annual data on deforestation rates between 2012 and 2016 from two rapidly developing islands: Sumatra and Kalimantan. The total area of Hutan Desa increased from 750 km(2) in 2012 to 2500 km(2) in 2016. We applied a spatial matching approach to account for biophysical variables affecting deforestation and Hutan Desa selection criteria. Performance was assessed relative to a counterfactual likelihood of deforestation in the absence of Hutan Desa tenure. We found that Hutan Desa management has successfully achieved avoided deforestation overall, but performance has been increasingly variable through time. Hutan Desa performance was influenced by anthropogenic and climatic factors, as well as land use history. Hutan Desa allocated on watershed protection forest or limited production forest typically led to a less avoided deforestation regardless of location. Conversely, Hutan Desa granted on permanent or convertible production forest had variable performance across different years and locations. The amount of rainfall during the dry season in any given year was an important climatic factor influencing performance. Extremely dry conditions during drought years pose additional challenges to Hutan Desa management, particularly on peatland, due to increased vulnerability to fire outbreaks. This study demonstrates how the performance of Hutan Desa in avoiding deforestation is fundamentally affected by biophysical and anthropogenic circumstances over time and space. Our study improves understanding on where and when the policy is most effective with respect to deforestation, and helps identify opportunities to improve policy implementation. This provides an important first step towards evaluating the overall effectiveness o f this policy in achieving both social and environmental goals.
Keyword Ecology
Geography, Planning and Development
Global and Planetary Change
Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Grant ID

Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
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Created: Wed, 13 Sep 2017, 17:29:12 EST by Dr Truly Rintanen on behalf of School of Biological Sciences