Research Results from the Community-based Forestry Demonstration Program

Ft. Collins, CO (December 15, 2007)- In 2000, the Ford Foundation initiated the Community-Based Forestry (CBF) Demonstration Program to help communities build forest and natural resource assets in order to provide sustainable new jobs and enterprises, increase family income, revitalize land-based cultures, and improve ecosystem health. Financial and technical support were provided to 13 “Implementing Partners” across the U.S. to initiate or enhance innovative tools and strategies that would lead to the demonstration program’s goals.

Then, in 2004, financial support was provided to Colorado State University to convene a multi-disciplinary research team to work with the implementing partners on research questions of mutual interest. The research component was based on a participatory research approach in which researchers and practitioners alike are joint investigators into mutually defined research question.
Project researchers partnered with CBF groups and found that these groups had:
* Common organizational strategies to effect change, including entrepreneurial leadership styles and a focus on collaboration and networking.
* A focus on ecological assessment and monitoring as activities that generated benefits for communities and forests.
* Specific suggestions for partner organizations – such as local businesses, universities, and policymakers – to help expand CBF group capacity at local and regional levels.
Related Resources:
Community-Based Forestry Demonstration Program Report
Community-Based Forestry Implementing Partners Report
Colorado State University