For many years, the Government of Malawi unsuccessfully tried to solve forest management problems alone, without input from local communities. As the situation began to get out of control, a new paradigm has begun to emerge: Community Based Forest Management (CBFM). The guiding principle of CBFM is to give local communities rights to both manage and commercially benefit from the natural resources on their land.
However, some people still question whether CBFM will really deliver poverty reduction and a sustainable forest resource all at once. The Forest Governance Learning Group (FGLG) Malawi therefore commissioned a study to capture and spread information about the ingredients for successful CBFM.
The study revealed both successful and unsuccessful examples of CBFM – with several transitions from success to failure or the reverse on the same site. This report discusses the findings and makes recommendations as to how CBFM can work in Malawi.
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