Evaluation and Learning for International Sustainable Forest Initiatives

October 17, 2017

The Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD) promoted a two-day workshop in Oslo where international agencies and evaluation practitioners came together to discuss how evaluations can help contribute to sustainable forestry. Indufor’s experts were present and shared their thoughts on the challenges and opportunities on integrating with the private sector in forest and climate action.

According to the participants, five key issues that forestry evaluations should focus on are to:

  • Understand what incentivises people and governments to change behaviour
  • Engage with the private sector
  • Think more about and define transformational change
  • Build evaluations and evaluability right from the beginning
  • Engage indigenous peoples.

Marisa Camargo presented some of the challenges and opportunities to engage the private sector actors in an effort to help deliver zero-deforestation supply chain commitments by 2020. One of the recommendations was to improve communication between public and private sector stakeholders, and share best practices between public sector evaluations and private sector due diligence processes.


Petra presented lessons from a recent forestry project evaluation that Indufor has carried out for the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland. The evaluation covered three regional projects in Central America, Andes and the Mekong Area. The main message from the study was that the forestry sector still has untapped potential to mitigate climate change, while creating income and improving livelihoods of the local people. This is achieved by working through a value chain approach and with solid business plans. It is also important to link the initiatives to further investment sources.

The Andean Sustainable Forestry Project  supported an initiative in an indigenous reserve in Colombia to produce natural blue tint from the fruit of the Genipa americana tree (locally known as jagua or huito). The business was developed around an environmentally and socially sustainable value chain and ensuring equitable sharing of benefits between the different actors, especially indigenous peoples.

Indufor has a strong track record in evaluating projects, programs and policies in the fields of development cooperation, forestry and climate change. Our clients in evaluation assignments include governments, the EU, and bilateral and multilateral development agencies, as well as private organizations. The evaluation services include project (performance) reviews, final and ex-post evaluations, monitoring, and impact assessments.

Recordings from the webcast will be made available in short time in the workshop’s website.

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