By Yurdi Yasmi, Manager, Capacity Building and Technical Services, RECOFTC
The United Nations International Year of Forests, with the theme ‘Celebrating Forests for People,’ just drew to a close. Many applauded the UN for choosing a theme that signaled attention to people, the stewards of forests, who have long been neglected.
In fact, ‘forests for people’ is not a new discourse at all. In 1978, the World Forestry Congress had the same theme. So now, 33 years later, we must ask ourselves again: how much progress has been achieved for forest-dependent people? Are they now playing a more active role in forest management? Are they benefiting more from forests and forestry?