Community Based Forest Management (CBFM) is a system of managing forest by the participation of local community for the mutual benefit of forest and local people. However, the level of participation may be varied according to the modalities and tenure arrangements. Nepal has been implementing CBFM approach for the forest through differently named programs since 1976, with the formulation of National Forestry Plan, 1976. Recently, six different modalities of forest management are categorized as CBFM that covers about 2.3 million hectare forest that is 38.5% of total forest in the country, and involved more than 3.8 million households. This vast number of households benefited has also brought special attention on further development and expansion of community based forest management modalities in Nepal. Moreover, its piloting experience on CBFM, Nepal appears at the front position in implementing CBFM program in the international arena. To grab this achievement it has gone through many ups and downs. Behind its success stories it has faced many issues with lots of learning and experience. In this connection, this paper has tries to explore the current status of various CBFM modalities in Nepal retrospectively with the experience from more than 3 decades of policy formulation and implementation. Moreover, this paper also strives to illustrate the lessons learned, related issues and the recent initiatives on CBFM practice in Nepal, which may benefit the policy makers and practitioners interested in community based forestry. Moreover, this paper has highlighted that only one type of CBFM model is not enough to address the need of different category people of diverse locality, for which policy reforms and revision of relevant guidelines are crucial according to the changing context and lesson learns.
Community Based Forest management, People’s participation, Policy reform, Nepal
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