Civil Society and Indigenous Peoples in the Democratic Republic of the Congo Evaluate their Participation in REDD+
Evaluation intended to enhance the effectiveness of stakeholder engagement.
Civil society and indigenous peoples have been involved in the REDD+ process in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) since activities commenced in January 2009. They have participated actively in the process of developing a REDD+ National Strategy under the UN-REDD Programme and the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility, and in the implementation of consultation activities under the World Bank’s Forest Investment Programme. Some activities have been successful; others less so, raising the question as to why certain approaches to stakeholder engagement have worked better than others.
The DRC Civil Society Working Group for Climate and REDD+ has decided that they need to learn from their involvement in REDD+ over the last four years in order to understand: what has and has not been successful; how the current organization of civil society influences their work and efficiency; how the socio-political context and influence of other stakeholders impacts their ability to participate effectively in the process; and what can be improved.
This initiative comes at an important time given recent developments. Firstly, DRC is now moving from the REDD+ Readiness Phase to the REDD+ Investment Phase. This presents a new context for civil society and indigenous peoples to operate and engage in REDD+. Secondly, Norway is providing new “Tier-2” funding support to civil society, which will focus on capacity building, strengthening organizations, and Information, Education and Communication. The need to learn from previous experiences in order to maximize the effectiveness of stakeholder engagement in this new period of REDD+ activity in the country is extremely important.
Civil society and indigenous peoples will therefore undertake a self-evaluation of their involvement in REDD+ and use the outcomes to see how their work can be improved and expanded. There is always a need to include more stakeholders, reach more widely, include new competencies and develop new initiatives.
A national workshop will take place in September which will include a participatory evaluation of their participation in the REDD+ process in DRC so far and an analysis of stakeholder engagement needs in the new REDD+ context. A strategy for stakeholder engagement in DRC’s planned REDD+ work will be developed based on the recommendations and findings from the evaluation and the analysis. A report with lessons learned and recommendations from the evaluation workshop will be made available by November 2013.