Knowledge tree on REDD+ benefit sharing

The knowledge tree is a tool to support those designing and implementing REDD+ payment distribution mechanisms.
It assists policymakers and practitioners to develop guidelines by reviewing lessons learnt on the ground.
The tree takes users from concept and principles, to step-by-step detailed advice on design, implementation and assessment.

In recent years, developing benefit sharing mechanisms has been a key national priority for many REDD+ countries as REDD+ policies and projects seek to incentivize forest owners to change their forest management practices in the forests they depend on for their livelihoods, and to ensure both environmental and social justice. Discussions around benefit sharing often start with how much should be paid or percentages derived from total payment that should be channelled to beneficiaries. However, this is not as simple as it sounds, as forest owners do not use, manage or protect forests only for economic gain.

Policymakers can create a range of benefit sharing options, but it is important to determine who a programme should reach; define what it should achieve; and consider the various factors that influence the forest practices of local communities, forest managers and government agencies at the local to national levels. This might seem self-evident, but in the context of a programme like REDD+, which is subject to a range of competing agendas, the specific objectives of a particular initiative need to be explicit.

The purpose of this tool is to help with the design and implementation of payment distribution mechanisms under REDD+. We aim to assist and inform the development of guidelines by providing a review of lessons learnt on the ground.

Targeted users

Our targeted users are policymakers and practitioners who are actually involved in designing and implementing REDD+ payment distribution mechanisms as donors, civil society organizations (CSOs) and international organizations supporting the implementation of REDD+.

  1. Part 1 introduces the concept, principles and analytical framework that underpin payment distribution scheme development, and provides a useful resource for those seeking an overview. It also provides overarching questions that need to be considered and answered before developing appropriate payment distribution mechanisms.
  2. Part 2 provides more detailed advice for those designing and implementing REDD+ payment distribution mechanisms on what they need to consider during each step of the design and implementation process.
  3. Part 3 introduces assessment framework to assess different benefit sharing mechanism options

The knowledge tree also provides illustrative examples on how countries, projects and programmes have taken these factors in account.

Click on the yellow buttons below to find out more about contextual factors like tenure and governance, the design of REDD+ benefit sharing mechanisms, and how to assess outcomes through considering effectiveness, efficiency, equity and legitimacy.