GFP Nepal concept note
Nepal’s forest sector is facing unprecedented transitions on several fronts, and the drivers for such change exist both within and outside the country. At the country level, the popular demand for a new structure of the State is now being debated in the Constituent Assembly, with profound implications for forest governance and management. Globally, the emergence of climate change agenda has redefined the scope and functions of forest ecosystems, incorporating the long-overlooked environmental services and the potential for adaptation and resilience.
The long history of community movement is also taking new turns, with around eighteen thousand organized community groups already active in forest management.
Community based forest management is moving towards capturing emerging market opportunities, but it is facing policy and regulatory hurdles and suffer from the lack of support services. Donors, which have remained the key players in Nepal’s community forestry, are also revisiting the programmers to improve the effectiveness of their support in the changing context. Moreover, Nepal’s historic 20-year Master Plan for the Forestry Sector (MPFS) is expiring soon. Similarly the current Interim Plan, that guides overall development activities of the government and other actors in the country, will expire in July 2010.
All this provides an immense opportunity to catalyze the processes of restructuring the state, institutions, and policy in forest governance in more fundamental sense than ever before, by linking diagnostic studies with the processes of multi-stakeholder dialogues and interactive engagements