Keywords: community-based forest management, conservation zoning policy, environmental governance, Madagascar, rural development, stakeholder learning, sustainable development, sustainability, territorial changes, decision support
An environmental governance support tool: community-based forest management contracts (Madagascar)
This article reports on the implementation of community-based forest management contracts in Madagascar as part of a national environmental action plan designed to strike a balance between rural development and conservation of natural resources. The article highlights how these systems offer an outstanding opportunity to observe the negotiation processes and shifts in relationships between the actors involved, and thus to learn more on the conditions governing sustainable management of conservation and development. A single, specific management system like community-based management cannot be expected to resolve every single issue, but analysing the interplays between different management systems provides insight into the specific features of target cases. They would appear to be promising decision support tools for environmental governance issues as they promote social and territorial reforms and generate new flexibilities for all the stakeholders involved.