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International forest deliberations, processes and civil society: an historical account (19922007)

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International discussions on forest issues emerged in the 1980s, mostly due to the activism of environmental NGOs. Forest negotiations proved particularly contentious in the Rio Summit. The post-Rio period witnessed a gradual dynamism towards the development of consensus. The consensus-building process at the UN led to the establishment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests. The process was further pursued through the establishment of the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests and the United Nations Forum on Forests. The present paper sheds light on international forest negotiations from 1992 to 2007. The paper, drawing also on the personal experiences and reflections of the author, posits that effective pursual and implementation of international agreements on forests will depend on the continued active engagement of the NGOs and other stakeholders involved. It is further suggested that genuine multilateralism calls for political will, meaningful engagement of all stakeholders, and the provision of requisite resources and means of implementation.
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Keywords: NGOs role; international forest negotiations; multilateralism; personal experiences

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2008

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