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  • Print publication year: 2020
  • Online publication date: July 2020

14 - Are Some Forestry Problems Too Wicked?

from Part II - Tools to Address Wicked Problems


There have been numerous discussions about the future of the world’s forests since the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in 1992. These discussions continue today at fora such as the United Nations Forum on Forests, where forest policy-makers from around the world come together to talk to each other about forests. These discussions are coming full circle, with many of the topics from earlier discussions being revisited by a new generation of participants. Meanwhile, tropical forests continue to be converted to other forms of land use, while some forests, like those of Canada have switched from a carbon sink to a carbon source, and many forests continue to be degraded by poor management or even the complete absence of any formal management. These represent major challenges and require appropriate responses, but such responses have on the whole not materialized.

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Messier, C., Puettmann, K. J. and Coates, K. D., editors. 2014. Managing Forests as Complex Adaptive Systems. Building Resilience to the Challenge of Global Change. Abingdon, UK: Earthscan from Routledge.
Ostrom, E. 1999. Self-Governance and Forest Resources. Center for International Forestry (CIFOR), Occasional Paper No. 20. Bogor, Indonesia: CIFOR.
Wexler, M. N. 2009. Exploring the moral dimension of wicked problems. International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy 29(9/10):531542.