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Community resource management as a strategy for sustainable economic development

by Portal Web Editor last modified Jan 10, 2013 09:10 AM
Contributors: Florentino O.Tesoro

Current community-based resource management has developed in the Philippines from a long history of participatory management programs. In the 1990s, these were pooled into the People-Oriented Forestry Program (POFP). This category contains eight initiatives, including watershed management, a low-income community program, coastal environmental management, a seedling program, and community forestry. This study assesses the implementation of these programs. There was a shift from having few organizations in charge of large areas of land, to having many communities in charge of many smaller areas of land. Sustainability naturally will follow this positive shift in resource management, given proper technical and financial assistance. In addition to biological sustainability, this is more financially sustainable from the government's perspective, because it saves the government money earmarked for land management. Instead, local government units are able to establish CBFM sites, help communities organize, and initiate other synergistic activities. It was also observed that land ownership is a good impetus for development of forestry, since it makes long-term investments in trees less risky. More clear and stable governmental policies would reduce this risk further. As policies mature and the potential of POFP becomes accepted, institutional collaboration, business partnerships, and linkages will continue to grow. This will lay the foundation for true establishment of participatory management of forests and natural resources in the Philippines. Making the program larger, rather than limiting it to the DENR, will enhance this development.

Author(s): Florentino O.Tesoro

Publication Date: 1999

Location: Philippines

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