Asian Journal of Environment and Disaster Management (AJEDM)

Volume 2 Number 1 (2010)

Asian Journal of Environment and Disaster Management 2010 2 1

doi: 10.3850/S179392402009000301

Managing Forest Conflict in Asia: An Assessment of USAID’s Strategies and Experience

Jennifer Wallace
Department of Government and Politics, University of Maryland College Park, Maryland 20742, USA.


This article examines the US Agency for International Development’s (USAID) two-part initiative on forest conflict, including the Conflict Timber Project (2002–2003) and Managing Conflict in Asian Forest Communities (2003–2007). Within this context, the article explores how USAID conceptualized the problem of forest conflict, how it sought to promote a more conflict-sensitive approach across the region, and the extent to which increased awareness translated into changed practices. The primarymethod of research was through interviews of USAID headquarters staff, mission staff, implementing partners, and other relevant experts and stakeholders. The findings demonstrate that while USAID’s initiative greatly improved on the work of other development agencies by providing a more nuanced and multifaceted understanding of the problem, the analytic framework nonetheless led to certain choices that privileged certain actors and processes in the implementation phase at the expense of others.

Keywords: Forest conflict, Conflict timber, USAID.

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