chapter  10
18 Pages

Tenure, property rights and forest landscape restoration

ByWil de Jong, Marieke van der Zon, Andrea Flores Urushima, Yeo-Chang Youn, Jinlong Liu, Ning Li

Legal tenure and related property rights are relevant and important in forest landscape restoration (FLR), although the assumption that ensuring legal tenure with full property rights is a decisive incentive in and of itself for forest restoration is not supported by empirical evidence. Legal tenure status over forest lands, and property rights derived from legal tenure, are diverse between countries, and even within countries. Case studies from China, Vietnam and Nepal show that even when legal tenure is held over forest land, the property rights derived from tenure may be severely constrained and not necessarily widely recognized, respected or protected. Legal tenure may be a less desired option in terms of rights that are granted, and other arrangements, that is, customary arrangements or other forms of non-statutory enforced arrangements, may result in more secure rights. When FLR is desired, legal tenure needs to be addressed, but what kind of tenure is provided to forest users, what rights the tenure implies, and what constraints are the most appropriate depend on the wider legal, political and social context in which forest restoration is being pursued.