The good of wood: Building an ‘inclusive’ spatial decision support system for forest restoration

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


Interest in forest restoration has been gaining traction over time, with the recognition of the multiple benefits forests can provide. For others, forests can represent a burden and constraint to their livelihood activities. Even so, forest restoration is acknowledged internationally as an important means to mitigate and adapt against climate change effects and land degradation. International commitments such as the Bonn Challenge, aimed at restoring 150 million hectares of the world’s deforested and degraded land by 2020, are evidence of this. Yet approaches to determine where and what restoration options are suitable, at multiple scales, can range from the autocratic and technical, to inclusive grassroots’ led approaches, influencing stakeholder acceptance. Reliable data is a pre-requisite to understanding the context and landscape characteristics to assess suitability for various restoration options. In parallel the values and interests of those connected to the landscape also need to be incorporated into the decision making process to enhance the effectiveness and equitability of those decisions. We aim to combine spatial socio-economic and environmental data and the perceptions of stakeholders to develop a decision-making platform to identify and explore options for restoration. The FORLAND restoration project, with case studies in Scotland and Brazil, aims to co-develop and test ways to engage stakeholders to achieve forest expansion and restoration. Based on the IUCN Restoration opportunities assessment methodology, and adapted to the projects needs, we will be using participative workshops to engender discussions and planning on a variety of forest expansion objectives. Building on these inputs and combining with existing spatial data, we will explore different scenarios for forest restoration within selected landscapes. By creating an inclusive decision, support system will enable us to facilitate and potentially negotiate conflicts around rural land use, reaching a wider consensus on how future restoration could take place. This study fits with the FLARE theme ‘Beyond the Household: Measuring the Impacts of Forest Change on Communities, Economies, and Ecologies’ as we combine both a quantitative and qualitative approaches to understand the opportunities and burdens of forest restoration from multiple perspectives.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2019
EventFlare 2019 5th Annual Meeting - Americia, Michigan, United States
Duration: 23 Aug 201925 Aug 2019


ConferenceFlare 2019 5th Annual Meeting
CountryUnited States

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