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Ambus L.,Research and Extension Consultant | Hoberg G.,University of British Columbia
Society and Natural Resources | Year: 2011

Community-based management is an important trend in natural resource governance. In North America, British Columbia has received considerable attention for its initiatives in community forestry. This article addresses the question of whether British Columbia's initiatives have met the government's intention to provide "local control over forests for local benefits." We develop an analytical framework for gauging the extent of devolution, and examine the actual distribution of authority over forest management decision making between the provincial government and the community tenure holder. On the basis of document analysis and interviews, we conclude that the degree of devolution thus far is quite modest. The new community tenure is, with a few modest exceptions, essentially a much smaller version of the province's area-based industrial forest tenure. This approach to assessing devolution can be applied to other jurisdictions to help gauge the sincerity of government claims regarding devolving control over natural resource management to communities. © 2011 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

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