Sustainable forest management, with its respect for the ecosystem equal to economic considerations, also implies broad public participation in both decision making and implementation. This requires a movement in thinking from management for the people to management with the people, making the people part of the solution rather than the problem. A similar movement in thinking is required in terms of management approach, from a top down perspective to a more decentralised and devolved local management approach, with the decision making power taken on by local communities. This approach requires fairly stable, homogenous communities, the absence of competing claims on the ground, smooth democratic processes within community groups or, failing that, dedicated, competant and honest leaders.
In the Asia-Pacific region alone, some 430-540 million people are "forest-dependent" for their livliehood.
In Nepal almost half a million hectares of forest have been handed over so far to 7,000 user groups, and a thousand other such groups are waiting for formal registration. In India, some of the best forest devolution experiments are underway using joint forest management agreements, allowing some 10,000 community groups to protect and use more than 1.5 million hectares of forest land.
The Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential is a unique, experimental research work of the Union of International Associations. It is currently published as a searchable online platform with profiles of world problems, action strategies, and human values that are interlinked in novel and innovative ways. These connections are based on a range of relationships such as broader and narrower scope, aggravation, relatedness and more. By concentrating on these links and relationships, the Encyclopedia is uniquely positioned to bring focus to the complex and expansive sphere of global issues and their interconnected nature.
The initial content for the Encyclopedia was seeded from UIA’s Yearbook of International Organizations. UIA’s decades of collected data on the enormous variety of association life provided a broad initial perspective on the myriad problems of humanity. Recognizing that international associations are generally confronting world problems and developing action strategies based on particular values, the initial content was based on the descriptions, aims, titles and profiles of international associations.
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