English French Spanish

Lessons Learnt

This report card presents findings from our efforts to monitor and help improve forest management systems in seven forest-rich countries. Governments have made numerous commitments to improve forest sector governance and transparency, but too few of them are effective in practice and not one forest authority is meeting all of its obligations. Key lessons learnt from the programme include:

  • Forest authorities often fail to comply with duty to publish key documents and data as required by freedom of information laws and forest sector-specific agreements.
  • Customary rights of indigenous forest peoples and forms of community forest management have received little attention from governments compared to commercial forest resource exploitation. They need to be prioritised.
  • New regulations and laws are liable to be undermined from one side by popular resistance and the other by corruption unless developed through a genuinely open and participative process. Efforts to include all stakeholders in decisions must be improved.
  • Unless international efforts to stamp out illegal timber focus on transparency in producer countries alongside entry controls in importing countries to determine where timber comes from, they risk rubber-stamping a corrupt status quo.
  • The timber industry avoids and delays paying its dues and funds are not reaching local forest communities. Governments, industry and civil society need to become more transparent in distribution and investment of forestry royalties and incentives.
  • Too little consideration is given to what the best use of the forest is, particularly in an era of climate change. Mining, oil, agro-industry and other projects on forest lands are frequently agreed behind closed doors with little consideration of strategic environment impacts.


  • Provisions for Access to InformationClick for other analysis themes:Participation - Tenure - Laws - ...
  • The annual report cards for Making the Forest Sector Transparent have documented major developments ...
  • Over four years, the report cards have shown that positive-sounding agreements, commitments and init...
Hosted by
Global Witness DAR CIKOD CED SDI Grupo Faro Ut'z Che RRN
All country specific pages on the website are independently managed by the relevant organisation from that country. Disclaimer