Making forest values work: Enhancing multi-dimensional perspectives towards sustainable forest management
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SubjectSustainable forest management; Ecosystems multi-dimensionality; Value theory; Sustainability; Forest policy; Forest governance
Background and Purpose: Sustainability, sustainable development and sustainable forest management are terms that are commonly, and interchangeably used in the forest industry, however their meaning take on different connotations, relative to varying subject matter. The aim of this paper is to look at these terms in a more comprehensive way, relative to the current ideology of sustainability in forestry. Materials and Methods: This paper applies a literature review of the concepts of: i) sustainable development; ii) sustainable forest management; and iii) economic and non-economic valuation. The concepts are viewed through a historical dimension of shifting paradigms, originating from production- to service-based forestry. Values are discussed through a review of general value theory and spatial, cultural and temporal differences in valuation. Along the evolution of these concepts, we discuss their applicability as frameworks to develop operational guidelines for forest management, relative to the multi-functionality of forests. Results and Conclusions: Potential discrepancies between the conceptual origins of sustainable development and sustainable forest management are highlighted, relative to how they have been interpreted and diffused as new perceptions on forest value for the human society. We infer the current paradigm may not reflect the various dimensions adequately as its implementation is likely to be more related to the distribution of power between stakeholders, rather than the value stakeholders’ place on the various forest attributes.
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