World Resources Institute WRI

Building National Forest and Land-Use Information Systems: Lessons from Cameroon, Indonesia, and Peru

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This working paper examines the institutional, human resources, and financial capacities of three countries that have developed a forest and land-use information system, and highlights common enabling factors and challenges.

Key Findings

  • Securing the support from the highest levels of the government is instrumental in encouraging ministries to work together to resolve conflicting land use policies and initiating the development of a national FLUIS.
  • To account for all drivers of forest and land-use change, one of the first steps in developing a FLUIS is to undergo an institutional mapping exercise, where all relevant agencies affecting forests and land use are identified. These agencies, including those not directly governing the forest sector, should be included in the design and implementation of the system to help foster willingness to share data.
  • Beyond the initial development and availability of external support, a FLUIS requires continued main¬tenance and updating. Due to the common cycle of staff turnover and the resulting loss of institutional memory, funding for staff training is necessary. Alloca¬tion of funds in the national and sub-national budgets is necessary for maintaining a staff dedicated to the FLUIS after external funding ends.
  • In addition to funding for staff training and retention, there are other budget requirements for sustaining a FLUIS, such as equipment maintenance and data stor¬age infrastructure. Availability of this funding would be more stable if incorporated into a policy framework that establishes support for improved data integration and management.
  • To integrate data from sub-national governments in a national FLUIS, more capacity building and trainings on a set of standards for forest and land-use data col¬lection are needed and regional governments should be included in the planning process and implementa¬tion of the system.

Executive Summary
Countries adopting forest and land-use-based climate change mitigation policies are investing in infrastructure and capacity to track the impacts of these policies. A major capacity gap is the lack of coordination among ministries and sub-national governments that regulate drivers of forest and land-use change from both inside and outside the forest sector. Improving communication, data integration and data access among institutions is a key step towards identifying land-use policies that can balance a range of cross-sector objectives, and tracking these policies over time. To accomplish this, countries should develop data management systems that integrate spatial and non-spatial data from multiple sources.

This working paper focuses on the development of forest and land-use information systems (FLUIS), which are data management systems that integrate forest and land-use data. More specifically, this paper examines the institutional, human resources and financial capacities of three countries—Cameroon, Indonesia and Peru—that have developed a FLUIS, and highlights common enabling factors and challenges.

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