Natural Resources and Ecosystem Services

World's first voluntary quality of governance standard for forest management and emissions reduction launched in Nepal

7 November 2016

In a world first, and in the lead up to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Twenty Second Conference of the Parties (COP 22) to be held in Marrakesh this month, the Quality of governance standard for forest sector activities and programmes in Nepal at the community forest management level. Version 1.0. Pilot standard has been released in Nepal today.

The Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES) in collaboration with Dr. Tim Cadman of Griffith University, Australia, and Dr. Tek Maraseni of the University of Southern Queensland, Australia, has prepared a voluntary Pilot Quality of Governance Standard for forest management, including emissions reduction activities, in community forests of Nepal.

The Standard was launched by the President of the Nepal Foresters’ Association, Mr. Shekhar Kumar Yadav.

The standard is the result of five years of consultation with multi-stakeholders and is applicable to sustainable development projects occurring in Nepal’s forests including the UNFCCC initiative, Reducing Emissions from deforestation and Forest Degradation in Developing Countries (REDD+).

The standard has been developed by multi-stakeholders, including community forest user groups, government and NGOs, and provides a benchmark for evaluating the good governance of development programmes, including stakeholder participation in decision-making, accountability and transparency, and implementation. More than six hundred international, national, local, and community-level stakeholders have been directly involved in the standard’s development.

“I am thrilled to have been a part of this project. For the first time, local communities and other stakeholders have a method for assessing the governance quality of aid and development projects at the community level,” said Dr. Federico Lopez-Casero of the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES).

“Our standard can serve as a model for the involvement of national and local stakeholders in the development and application of forest sector projects and programmes in developing countries worldwide. Such standards will be increasingly important as countries seek to fulfil their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) to combatting climate change under the Paris Agreement,” said collaborating expert Dr. Tek Maraseni of the University of Southern Queensland.

The President of the Nepal Foresters’ Association welcomed the standard as a “useful instrument to contribute to the social, economic and environmental sustainability of Nepal’s forest management.”

Contact details: Federico Lopez-Casero, PhD, Manager, IGES: Email:, and Dr. Tim Cadman by  mail:

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