Asian Journal of Environment and Disaster Management (AJEDM)

Volume 5 Number 4 (2013)

doi: 10.3850/S1793924013000047

Community-Based Forestry Management: A Framework for Multi-Level Governance In Timor-Leste

Naori Miyazawa
Department of International Studies, Institute of Environmental Studies, Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Kashiwanoha 5-1-5, Kashiwa-shi, Chiba, 277-8563, Japan.


The paper will discuss how forest resources are governed based on an operational framework at three different levels: (1) international; (2) national; and (3) local. A growing acknowledgement of the right of the local community for forest management has been witnessed throughout the past two decades. This article particularly focuses on the framework and function of customary law for forest resources in post-conflict Timor-Leste. These frameworks at the different levels are inter-related with each other and provide a useful platform to establish a well-functioning system in accordance with particular local settings. The formal law and customary law have a rather complimentary relationship and promote each other. During the gap period in post-conflict setting, the role of customary law has been especially large and could provide the option for longer-term sustainable development. In the pursuit of sustainable development, the core mechanism of the customary law needs to be further strengthened.

Keywords: Local community, Post-conflict society, Timor-Leste, Customary law, Sustainable development.

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