• Developing capacity, confidence and voice: experiences from a five-year capacity building for improving forest governance model

      MBZIBAIN, AURELIAN; Begum, Rufsana; Haruna, Ella; Nyirenda, Richard; Pavey, Marc (World Forestry Congress 2015, 2015-09-07)
      The objective of this paper is to share lessons learnt from the Centre for International Development and Training’s (CIDT) five-year capacity building (CB) model for improving forest governance (FG). The model develops individual, organisational, and institutional capacities and creates “venues of accountability” that facilitate cross-country learning. The model operates at three levels: international, regional and national. The first component is a UK-based programme of training and mentoring that targets mid-level FG champions from government, private sector and civil society in 20+ countries/3 continents. This is complemented by a series of high-level regional Forest Governance Forums (FGFs) facilitated in selected countries (Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana and Liberia) and tailored national CB events co-delivered with local partners. Data is drawn from online surveys of international alumni, regional FGF participants and 80 face-to-face interviews with various stakeholders from 15 countries. Results show significant improvements in knowledge, skills, attitudes and confidence of course participants, with evidence of effective application of learning and multiplier effects on the ground. Additionally, the value of north-south and south-south exchanges is evidenced by the creation of networks and alliances of FG champions. The findings also demonstrate the innovativeness of FGFs as spaces of accountability and cross-country learning, notably because they ensure momentum on FG reforms is maintained at national, regional and international levels. The implications of this work to policy and practice are discussed.