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Title The Auctioning of Forest User Rights as part of Participatory Forest Management in Field Pilots in Kakamega Forest, Kenya.

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Short title Auctioning of Forest User Rights.

Author(s) Khalumba, M.(1); Holm-Müller, K.(2); Wünscher, T. (1)

Presenting author Khalumba, M.

Institution(s) (1) Center for Development Research (ZEF b), University of Bonn; (2) Institute for Food and Resource Economics, University of Bonn

Keywords Participatory forest management, auction, environmental services

Abstract The Kenya Forest Service has adopted a forest management system of issuing permits for the extraction of forest products. The permit system attempts to charge forest users directly for the external costs they impose on society. Yet, the appropriate price per permit is not known and the system is subject to exploitation, for example, by using a permit to extract any amount of forest products making many trips per day or harvest throughout the year. Also, recent legislation by the Kenyan government encourages local communities to participate more actively in the forest’s management. This project attempts to combine market forces with participatory forest management in field pilots around Kakamega forest by auctioning area-specific user permits to individuals and by establishing a communal monitoring system. The auction helps determine competitive market prices. Sanctioning can lead to the individual’s loss of user rights and the community’s loss of auction income and thus provides incentives to comply with rules of sustainable resource use. The pilots are implemented in two communities with different degrees of flexibility in scheme design. Household and field surveys as well as qualitative observations during the implementation process are used to identify constraints and measure success.

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Ref. No. 640