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The Illusion of Participation: Tokenism in REDD+ Pilot Projects in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Noragric PhD alumnus Raymond Achu Samndong interrogates local people on REDD+ in the Democratic Republic of Congo and concludes that the projects amount to ‘tokenism’, with local people having no say in the projects in their communities and with women often excluded. Chapter in new Springer Nature book.

The Illusion of Participation: Tokenism in REDD+ Pilot Projects in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Chapter in 'Global Forest Governance and Climate Change: Interrogating Representation, Participation, and Decentralization' by Emmanuel O. Nuesiri (Ed.)

About the chapter

The chapter finds that information during the free prior and informed consent (FPIC) process was insufficient for local people to decide whether to join the REDD+ project. Additionally, local people had no say in the REDD+ projects implemented in local communities. Local participation in the REDD+ project was limited to supply of labour and attending meetings for financial rewards. Furthermore, local participation often excluded women. Samndong concludes that community participation in REDD+ in DRC is ‘tokenism’ and that strong community participation would be difficult if local power relations that perpetuate social inequalities in the DRC are not addressed.

About the book (from the publisher, Springer)

"This edited collection assesses governance in forestry programmes and projects, including REDD+ governance. It examines political representation, participation and decentralisation in forest governance, providing insight as to how forest governance arrangements can be responsive to the socio-economic interests of local people and communities who live adjacent to and depend on forests. Global Forest Governance and Climate Change argues that inclusive complementary representation of local communities is required for strong participatory processes and democratic decentralisation of forest governance. Responsiveness to local people’s socio-economic interests in forestry initiatives require paying attention to not just the hosting of participatory meetings and activities, but also to the full cast of appointed, self-authorized, and elected representative agents that stand, speak, and act for local people. This book will be of interest to students and academics across the fields of climate change governance, forestry, development studies, and political economy. It will also be a useful resource for policy makers and practitioners responsible for forestry and climate change initiatives".

Part of the Palgrave Studies in Natural Resource Management book series.               

Published 21. March 2018 - 13:22 - Updated 21. March 2018 - 13:47

Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU)

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