Forest Governance Impact Monitoring

FoE-Ghana’s project entitled “Towards the Establishment of Baselines for VPA [1] Impact Monitoring in Ghana” (EBIM), kindly funded by the EU FAO FLEGT [2] Programme, aimed to develop a set of indicators and a baseline to measure impacts of the VPA in three areas: forest governance; the socio-economic situation; and livelihoods.

After the initial meeting with various key forest stakeholders, it was decided that the three areas were too broad and the project should instead focus on only one area – forest governance – to ensure coverage in sufficient depth and breadth to give a reliable baseline (final report available at the end link).

Main activities:

  • Identify and document data sources and means of verification for VPA impact monitoring indicators using methodologies identified by the Joint Impact Monitoring team
  • Develop a matrix of indicators to measure change in forest governance under the VPA
  • Select and validate a final set of indicators
  • Develop research methodology and tools (questionnaires), and train field researchers in their use
  • Collect and analyse questionnaire data and prepare a draft baseline report
  • Facilitate a stakeholders’ meeting to review and validate the draft baseline report, followed by further work to address stakeholders’ concerns
  • Facilitate a meeting to present the final report  and close the project.

Outcomes of the project

The final baseline has given us the present situation (2016) of forest governance in Ghana, and can be used by the Ghana Government, the EU, civil society organisations and other key stakeholders as a benchmark against which progress and impacts of the EU-Ghana VPA on forest governance in Ghana can be measured over time. The indicators and methodology give the tools for measurement. Prior to this project, there were no established impact areas, agreed indicators, or baseline for monitoring VPA impacts in Ghana, making previous efforts of monitoring difficult. The EBIM Project has therefore filled this gap by providing the tools and baseline for future monitoring.

The baseline and indicators can now be adopted for use by the Joint Impact Monitoring Team for the overall review and assessment of Ghana’s VPA progress towards good forest governance

Civil society organisations can also use the baseline and indicators to measure change in forest governance. Their results can be used to hold government and implementation stakeholders accountable if their studies show that progress towards good governance is slow, stagnant or moving backwards.

The baseline also indicates the performance of Ghana over the years of VPA implementation and shows which impact areas under governance need improvement and what structures are needed to bring about the required changes.

The project activities and outcomes have fostered engagement between government and non-state actors, which will enhance and facilitate the national adoption and use of the baseline.

The baseline report is now complete and can be downloaded here: IMPACT-MONITORING-BASELINE-REPORT

[1] VPA: Voluntary Partnership Agreement between the EU and Ghana for FLEGT implementation

[2] FLEGT: Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade

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