Equity and forest certification — A case study in Brazil
AbstractForest Stewardship Council certification aims to use markets to promote socially and environmentally responsible forest management, with a core principle of social “equity”. Yet there is no comprehensive framework for defining and assessing “equity”, nor is there a methodology for determining differences in definitions among forest stakeholders. We've employed an analytical framework to a case study of the FSC in Brazil to assess if FSC equity goals are coherent and adherent to its policies, standards and impacts, what factors in FSC's implementation are influencing that coherency, and whether FSC's policies on equity match expectations of stakeholders affected by certification. We found that contextual market factors, local capacity, and procedural rules governing the certification process influence FSC's implementation in an asymmetric way, favoring the certification of large industrial firms over community-based operations. Meanwhile FSC policies and standards prioritize procedural and contextual equity within the operations of individual certified firms. This contrasts with the expectations of local stakeholders focused on distributive outcomes. In general, FSC's ability to reach both its own and local stakeholder goals for equity relies on the proactive agency of actors committed to overcoming the many barriers to local benefit that are both external and internal to certification itself.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Forest Policy and Economics.
Volume (Year): 30 (2013)
Issue (Month): C ()
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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/forpol
Communities; FSC; Governance; Policies; Standards; Social impacts;
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