Assessing the Impact of Policy-Oriented Research: The Case of CIFOR's Influence on the Indonesian Pulp and Paper Sector
Summary Qualitative and quantitative methods are applied to assess the impact of CIFOR's political economy research on the Indonesian pulp and paper sector. Key-informant interviews triangulated by trend-series tests suggest important influence through advocacy intermediaries and counterfactuals of slower adoption of improvements. Effects on conservation set-asides, overcapacity, and plantation establishment are estimated to avert loss of 76,000-212,000 hectares of natural forest (135,000 under main assumptions). Application of an economic-surplus framework for environmental benefits of forest conservation and avoided implicit wood subsidies finds benefits of US$19 to US$583 million (US$133 million main estimate), compared with US$500,000 of direct research costs.
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