Features & Commentary
Valuable Breakthrough in Indonesia’s Efforts Towards Improved REDD+ Governance
Indonesian stakeholders launch Participatory Governance Assessment for REDD+.
By: Tina Hageberg, Dr. Abdul Wahib Situmorang and Emelyne Cheney
After two years of extensive consultations and involvement from Indonesian civil society actors, academia and the Government of Indonesia, the Participatory Governance Assessment for REDD+ (PGA) was launched in Jakarta on 6 May 2013. Dr. Kuntoro Mangkusubroto, Head of Indonesia’s REDD+ Preparedness Task Force/the Presidential Working Unit for Supervision and Management of Development (UKP4), refers to the PGA process in Indonesia as a “most valuable contribution to the process of improving governance of forests, land and REDD+” and emphasized the importance of regular governance data updates to “track progress or regression” towards the baseline now available.
|Credit: Randy Setiawan
Members from Indonesian civil society and Government of Indonesia receive the PGA for REDD+ report in Indonesia in Jakarta.
The PGA report provides a comprehensive analysis of the state of governance relevant for Indonesia’s REDD+ process in particular and forest governance in general, recommendations to address identified shortcomings, as well as information on the performance of selected governance issues at national, district and provincial levels.
The PGA approach, as applied by the UN-REDD Programme, builds on the UNDP Oslo Governance Centre’s knowledge and experience in conducting governance assessments, as well as FAO’s expertise in data collection in the forest sector. Currently, the UN-REDD Programme is conducting four PGA pilots: Ecuador, Indonesia, Nigeria and Viet Nam.
In his remarks, Dr (Hc) Zulkifli Hasan, Minister of Forestry stated that the PGA for REDD+ report will be used as key reference to develop the next strategic forestry planning, particularly with regard to the forest governance aspects. In addition, the PGA system will be a model used to conduct forest and REDD+ governance in the future. The PGA rightly points to areas requiring urgent attention, and as such provides comprehensive data and evidence for government planning and as a basis for further policy-making.
The Indonesian PGA report is currently being translated into English and will be made available during the Pre-Policy Board 10 Information Session in Lombok on 25 June. However, some of the key report findings are related to a capacity disparity between the national, provincial and district levels with sub-national capacities relatively weaker than the national level. Further, there is a clear need for transparency and better access to information on law enforcement as well as forest related crimes and conflicts which are not only being proceeded to court, but also solved. Further, government (at different levels) should not only be actively involved in law enforcement, it should also be the main driver for policy reform. Findings indicate that currently civil society actors are mainly pushing for both policy reforms and laws to be enforced.
While there has been some concern regarding negative scores attributed to a number of the provinces, it should be emphasized that the PGA data is not meant to be used a tool to shine the spotlight on underperformers. On the contrary, the PGA process encourages and allows for open dialogue and in turn acts as a starting point in addressing and improving critical issues and bottlenecks. Furthermore, it provides a set of realistic recommendations which take into account the realities, contexts and perspectives of the different stakeholders.
As such, the PGA report launched in Indonesia includes recommendations to address the shortcomings identified and inform policy-making. A “roadmap for improving governance” is suggested with the following three main components: integrating the roles of community and civil society actors in all of areas of identified limitations, weaknesses and bottlenecks; engaging business association initiatives in the improvement of governance - in particular in relation to permit systems; and lastly providing a clear direction and sufficient resources for the improvement of governance, together with identifying drivers of deforestation at the provincial level.
This approach is further strengthened by Abdon Naban, General Secretary of AMAN and one of the PGA Expert Panel members, as he states that the PGA process is contributing to build a constructive space for dialogue between different stakeholders, and that AMAN has already used preliminary findings and recommendations in their national working meeting in Palangkaraya-Central Kalimantan in March this year.
With the first phase of the PGA now being completed and baseline data being available which a variety of stakeholders deems credible, the focus will be on disseminating the PGA results at the sub-national levels; ensuring active use of the PGA data by government and civil society stakeholders and that recommendations are followed up, as well as identifying an appropriate Indonesian agency or institution to provide regular and timely updates. The UN-REDD Programme sees the PGA baseline data as a valuable point of departure and basis for governance reform in Indonesia, and is ready to continue to support this Indonesian-led process if and as requested.
More information about the PGA launch in Indonesia is available in this UN-REDD workspace folder.
|Tina Hageberg is a member of UNDP’s UN-REDD Programme Team as well as the UNDP Oslo Governance Centre. She leads The UN-REDD Programme’s work on Participatory Governance Assessments at the global level. Prior to joining UNDP, she managed Norad’s portfolio for REDD+ funding to civil society actors. She has also worked in the Norwegian Ministry of Culture, the NGO sector, as well as a communication agency. She holds a BA in Anthropology from the University of North Dakota, a one-year degree in Political Science from the University of Oslo, and an MSc in Development Studies from the London School of Economics.
||Dr. Abdul Wahib Situmorang (ucok) is currently PGA Project Manager for Indonesia under Democratic and Poverty reduction Unit-UNDP Indonesia. He has been involved with the development of PGA since the beginning and is one of the authors of the PGA report. Before becoming PGA Project Manager, Dr Situmorang worked with several UN agencies including UNDP. He also works with UN-REDD Indonesia Programme as Team Leader for Multi-Stakeholder Approach and National Consensus Building.
||Emelyne Cheney is Natural Resources Officer at the FAO. She provides technical assistance to countries on REDD+ safeguards and governance related activities within the UN-REDD Programme.