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Social forestry for economic and ecological sustainability : a thesis submitted to Massey University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Philosophy in Development Studies, Massey University
This study looked into the prospects of state and other agency-sponsored social forestry project in addressing poverty and abating environmental degradation in the uplands. Forest destruction is rooted both on poverty condition of the swiddeners and their traditional farming practices. The social forestry's participatory component, scientific cropping modules and incentive schemes are viewed as effective measures to these problems. The social forestry project which is jointly implemented by the New Zealand government and the Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC) in the three geothermal reservations managed by PNOC was chosen as the study areas due to the presence of the above-mentioned social forestry components in the project. The research findings supported the strength of the monetary incentive scheme in eliciting farmers' participation in development projects which subsequently controlled their destructive kaingin-making practices. This, however, must be coupled with extensive social. economic and environmental training of the kaingineros. The attractiveness of the project scheme to both project and non-project beneficiaries was also established. This study also demonstrates some successes of participation in terms of the development of the farmers' potentials and capabilities in self-management and realization of individual rights. The financial analysis in the study determined the economy of scale of the combination of cropping modules while the economic analysis has established the project's beneficial effects on the environment. It justifies financial allocation to projects of this nature. The natural and social problems in the implementation of the social forestry project could be addressed locally through the joint effort of project staff and the farmers-participants. The donor and proponent agencies, on the other hand, showed their sincere intention to minimize the occurrence of administrative problems.