A place at the table is not enough: Accountability for Indigenous Peoples and local communities in multi-stakeholder platforms

This article explores the challenges of achieving equity in multi-stakeholder platforms and forums (MSFs) focused on sustainable land and resource governance. Drawing on a comparative study of 11 subnational MSFs in Brazil, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Peru, the article examines the perspectives of Indigenous Peoples and local communities (IPLCs) who participate in these forums. The research aims to understand how MSFs can ensure voice, empowerment, and address inequality, while being accountable to the needs and interests of IPLCs. The findings highlight the optimism of IPLC participants but also reveal accountability failures. The article argues for greater strategic attention to how marginalized groups perceive their participation in MSFs and proposes ways to foster collective action and hold more powerful actors accountable to achieve equality, empowerment, and justice.
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Introduction – Multi-stakeholder forums and the promise of more equitable and sustainable land and resource use: perspectives from Brazil, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Peru

This Special Issue of the International Forestry Review presents a multi-country comparative research project by CIFOR, exploring the potential of multi-stakeholder forums (MSFs) as participatory mechanisms for sustainable land and resource use. The seven papers analyse power inequalities inherent in MSFs and discuss their capacity for equitable decision-making. While approaching MSFs from different perspectives, the papers emphasize the need for transformative MSFs that go beyond mere participation to achieve meaningful change.
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The role of multi-stakeholder forums in subnational jurisdictions: Framing literature review for in-depth field research

Drawing on 30+ years of experience, this Literature Review informs CIFOR's research on multi-stakeholder forums addressing land use in Brazil, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Peru. It explores the potential of MSFs to coordinate goals effectively while cautioning against token participation and aims to contribute to the study of participatory processes in the context of climate change.
Published by CIFOR

Trust building in a multi-stakeholder forum in Jambi, Indonesia

Liswanti et al. examine trust in multi-stakeholder forums (MSFs) through a literature review and Q-methodology analysis, finding that effective cooperation, unbiased facilitation, and a shared vision foster trust and contribute to the success of MSFs.
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Trust-building and leadership in multi-stakeholder forums: Lessons from Indonesia

This paper investigates the impact of trust and leadership in multi-stakeholder forums (MSFs) addressing land and resource use in Indonesia. Conflicting interests can hinder trust-building, requiring an understanding of historical relationships to improve collaboration. Different challenges within MSFs call for specific leadership styles, including shared leadership for positive relationships and charismatic leadership for conflicts of interest or lack of trust.
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Organizing for transformation? How and why organizers plan their multi-stakeholder forums

This article investigates the alignment of multi-stakeholder forum (MSF) organizers' plans and expectations with previous lessons on "invited spaces" regarding power relations and contextual considerations. Analysing 13 subnational MSFs in Brazil, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Peru, the study reveals that while organizers aimed to include historically disempowered groups, they often overlooked addressing power inequalities and lacked strategies to engage with unsustainable local development and political priorities.
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The role of multi-stakeholder forums in subnational jurisdictions: Methods training manual and tools for in-depth research

CIFOR's Methods Training Manual for in-depth field research examines multi-stakeholder forums (MSFs) addressing land use in Brazil, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Peru. It highlights the potential and pitfalls of MSFs, emphasizing the need for genuine participation. This timely research aims to contribute empirically to understanding MSFs and their role in addressing climate change and development trajectories.
Published by CIFOR

From sustainable forest management to restoration

This blog asks, how effective was Adaptive Collaborative Management, a concept that was first introduced 25 years ago?
Published in Forests News

Collaborative action mechanisms for forest positive agricultural commodities: impact of the Good Growth Partnership

Working simultaneously on production, demand, and finance, in Brazil, Paraguay, Indonesia and Liberia, the Good Growth Partnership (GGP) enables sustainable development in three global commodity supply chains: soy, beef, and palm oil. This Impact Brief covers the work of GGP in enabling national and subnational collaborative action mechanisms to reduce deforestation in Indonesia, Liberia, and Paraguay.
Published in evidensia

‘Glocalizing’ land-use and forest governance in the tropics: examining research partnerships and international forest policies affecting Brazil, DRC and Indonesia

This paper tackles both the framing and effectiveness of transnational initiatives affecting forest lands and peoples in the Global South, and the quality of relationships between institutions in the Global North and the Global South. Through more equitable research partnerships, this paper draws lessons from case studies in Indonesia (legality verification system in different forest property regimes), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (lifting of a moratorium on new logging concession), and Brazil (FSC in the Amazon region and the Amazon Fund).