Dialogue for Sustainable and Accountable Forest Management in Viet Nam

UNDEF's project in Vietnam works to strengthen regular dialogues between civil society and government agencies for more transparency and accountability in the forestry sector. The project has developed a forest change independent monitoring system, using near real-time satellite technology, and builds the capacity of civil society organizations to collect evidence using the system to verify forest changes in the Da Krong District. Implemented by the Centre for Sustainable Rural Development, the project holds regular open dialogues with local authorities to ensure that they identify causes of unplanned forest losses and prevent further deterioration.

The citizen-based monitoring system, which functions well, offers the possibility for scaling up and for being included in an emission reduction programme currently pending Government approval. Beneficiaries are trained in using Terra-I maps and GPS, enabling them to read and extract forest change information, as well as use GPS equipment to identify the position of a forest loss spot. For the first time, households and civil society organizations can access technology, training and data from the monitoring system to communicate with villagers and local officials about real time information on forest loss in their areas. Under local community management, beneficiaries make monthly validation trips to the forest to collect data which they report back to Commune People Committees and local rangers for action.