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An approach for the evaluation of rural governance in Cameroon: are community forests really forests for the communities?


  • Hilaire NKENGFACK

    () (University of Dschang, Cameroon)

  • Claude NJOMGANG

    () (University of Yaoundé II/Soa, Cameroon)

  • Daniela SARPE

    () (Dunarea de Jos University of Galati, Romania)


The aim of this paper is to evaluate the contribution of the traditional exploitation of timber, in a community framework, to the respect of governance principles in actions for the fight against poverty in some rural communities in Cameroon. In 1990, the government of Cameroon adopted laws on the freedom of association that authorised teaming up for the search of possibilities for a better economic welfare of populations. It is in line with this that in 1994, a new forest law which authorises willing communities to organise themselves and request the government to grant them a portion of the national forest of the public domain to be managed by them and for their personal interest. Also, and with the help of the international community, Cameroon elaborated in 1998 its first poverty reduction strategy paper that encouraged amongst others, community actions in the search of solutions to the economic crisis that stroke the country. Through the application of a logit model to the responses collected through a survey carried out on a sample of 200 individuals of the East region of Cameroon, it was noticed that timber exploitation in a community framework does not necessarily lead to the strengthening of the links of belonging to a common community, and to the equitable redistribution of revenues from the exploitation of the community forest.

Suggested Citation

  • Hilaire NKENGFACK & Claude NJOMGANG & Daniela SARPE, 2009. "An approach for the evaluation of rural governance in Cameroon: are community forests really forests for the communities?," Economics and Applied Informatics, "Dunarea de Jos" University of Galati, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, issue 2, pages 85-100.
  • Handle: RePEc:ddj:fseeai:y:2009:i:2:p:85-100

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    Community forests; gender; equity; governance; fight against poverty; participation;

    JEL classification:

    • Q23 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Forestry
    • R20 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - General


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