Economic, Legal and Political Perspectives
Leuven Global Governance series
Edited by Axel Marx, Miet Maertens, Johan Swinnen and Jan Wouters
Chapter 3: Private Standards in Forestry. Assessing the Legitimacy and Effectiveness of the Forest Stewardship Council
A. Marx, E. Bécault and J. Wouters
26/6/12/final 3. Private standards in forestry: assessing the legitimacy and eﬀectiveness of the Forest Stewardship Council ´ Axel Marx, Emilie Becault and Jan Wouters 1. INTRODUCTION Forests are receiving increased attention from policy-makers and academics. The United Nations declared 2011 International Year of Forests and the European Union is currently preparing an extensive review of its forests policy and strategy. As a result, global forest governance is becoming a hot topic, as exempliﬁed by a recent global assessment report on global forest governance by a set of leading political scientists and governance experts (Rayner et al., 2011). The report, Embracing Complexity: Meeting the Challenges of International Forest Governance, provides an extensive overview of the current forest regime and how it developed. It maps the diﬀerent actors and initiatives involved and discusses the many objectives related to the governance of forests. Starting with the failure to agree an international forest convention in Rio in 1992, to the establishment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests (IPF) (1995–97) and Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF) (1997–2000), to the formation of the UN Forum on Forests (UNFF), one can observe a failure of current multilateral initiatives with regard to forest governance. Dimitrov et al. state with regard to the UNFF that it is ‘explicitly deprived of a policymaking mandate’ (2007: 243). In parallel to the developments on the multilateral level one can also observe a rising contestation over this failure. Several NGOs started to protest heavily against deforestation and the destruction...
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