CIFOR–ICRAF publishes over 750 publications every year on agroforestry, forests and climate change, landscape restoration, rights, forest policy and much more – in multiple languages.

CIFOR–ICRAF addresses local challenges and opportunities while providing solutions to global problems for forests, landscapes, people and the planet.

We deliver actionable evidence and solutions to transform how land is used and how food is produced: conserving and restoring ecosystems, responding to the global climate, malnutrition, biodiversity and desertification crises. In short, improving people’s lives.

Governance, equity and well-being

Governance, equity and well-being

Governance, rights and institutions are critical to ensuring sustainable land use and well-being.

Problems related to land, trees and forests, as well as growing inequity cannot be solved if we do not understand and address unequal power relations and other governance challenges. Such research is essential to bring about (just) transformational change (what change, for whom) in policies, institutions and behaviours.

CIFOR-ICRAF conducts applied research to reveal and propose solutions to patterns of inequity (e.g. gender, ethnicity, age); to improve understanding of the roles of forests, trees and agroforests for smallholder and Indigenous livelihoods, health and food security; and to explore and innovate with sustainable landscape approaches and multi-stakeholder processes.

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Anne Larson

Team Leader, Governance, equity and well-being

About this theme

We study how decision-making processes at global, national and subnational levels can support or undermine sustainability and justice. In many countries, for example, insecure tenure, overlapping rights and land grabbing prevent the poor, ethnic minorities and women from exercising their fundamental right to food.

CIFOR-ICRAF’s work on governance, equity and well-being is aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly Goal 3: Good health and well-being; Goal 4: Quality education, Goal 5: Gender equality, Goal 10: Reduced inequalities, and Goal 16: Peace, justice and strong institutions.

Cross-cutting team

Gender research and analysis

Governance, equity and well-being: Fast facts

50% of the world’s land is collectively held by Indigenous Peoples and other local communities, but they have legally recognized rights to only 10%



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