Wednesday 3 March, 11:00 am – 12:30 pm, VIP 1

A major challenge for sustainable forest management in mountains is to design governance models that effectively articulate processes across social and ecological scales. This design implies not only understanding landscapes as social-ecological systems with complex institutional dynamics and attributes, but also evaluating their outcomes according to a notion of sustainability that integrates the heterogeneous values of local stakeholder groups and the various entities of the state. We suggest that applying the principles of environmental justice represents an important pathway towards sustainability in mountain landscapes. These principles relate the concept of sustainability to the attainment of (i) an equitable distribution of benefits; (ii) the adequate recognition and participation of actors in resource governance; and (iii) the enhancement of the capabilities of the actors involved.

In this session, we will present a series of innovative “seeds of sustainable governance” from different mountain forest landscapes of the world. Drawing on these experiences, we will explore the following questions in an open discussion with the presenters and the audience: How do different approaches to mountain forest governance (e.g. bottom up vs. top-down) relate to ecological attributes (e.g. type and status of forest ecosystems) and how do they translate into socio-ecological outcomes (e.g. livelihoods, ecological functions)?  What are effective ways of coordinating governance processes across scales (e.g. linking local models of governance to meso-scale processes)? To what degree do specific models of mountain forest governance comply with the principles of environmental justice?


  • Ronald Torres (Imaymana Foundation): Mancomunidad Choco Andino in Pichincha, Ecuador: Local governments working towards a meso-scale governance platform to attain sustainability goals
  • Manuel Peralvo (CONDESAN): The Andean Forest Program: promoting inclusive governance platforms as a key response to the challenges posed by processes of global environmental change in Andean forest landscapes
  • Chen Huafang (KIB): Planning for green road in greater Mekong sub-region
  • Musonda Mumba (UNEP): Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) in the mountain ecosystems of Nepal, Peru and Uganda
  • Kiros Hadgu (ICRAF): Creating sustainable and functional highlands through integrated and community-led restoration of degraded highlands
  • Jun He (ICRAF): Grassroots forest management in Xinqi, Yunnan, southwest China

Chair: Sarah-Lan Mathez-Stiefel (CDE) and Manuel Peralvo (CONDESAN)

Rapporteur: Kiros Hadgu