Community Empowerment and Resource Conservation: Reviewing the Community Forestry Policy in Taiwan





Published date: 

June, 2011


Dau-jye Lu
Ho-chia Chueh
Su-jenung Huang
Hong-chung Lin
Chung-ren Wang


This study explores the nature of community forestry and provides a discussion of its development in Taiwan that was initiated in 2002 with a view to including a cooperative approach to forest resources management with local communities. By the end of 2008, the Forestry Bureau had sponsored more than 1,000 community forestry projects, which promoted the public image of the Bureau. However, it is argued that their contributions to forest management and conservation works are rather limited, due to the lack of clear policies, proper institutional arrangements, local empowerment and participation. It is also argued that the rigidly centralized forest management approach is the constraint of the program. This study suggests that to effect better cooperative forest resources management, the program has to consider more local community participation, to deregulate and simplify bureaucratic processes, to diversify institutional arrangements, and to be embedded in the Bureau’s routine business.