Strategies for Multiple Use Management of Tropical Forests: An Assessment of Alternative Options
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CitationBoscolo, Marco. “Strategies for Multiple Use Management of Tropical Forests: An Assessment of Alternative Options.” CID Working Paper Series 2000.41, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, March 2000.
AbstractOne of the debates in tropical forest management centers on how to manage these resources for multiple uses. In fact, although the need to account for multiple values in forestry decisions is widely recognized, its implications for forest management are not clear. In particular, how is multiple-use to be achieved? Should management for multiple values be adopted on each forest management unit? Or should multiple use be attained at the landscape level, for example by dividing the landscape into units and manage each unit for a dominant use (e.g., timber production, conservation, etc.)? In tropical forest settings, where multiple use is often attained with less intensive harvesting and at the expenses of bringing larger – often virgin – areas into production, the circumstances under which multiple-use management is superior to dominant-use remain unclear. Past scholarly work has pointed to some circumstances under which dominant use may be superior to multiple (joint) use. The empirical significance of these circumstances has been quantified only in limited temperate settings. In this paper, we review two circumstances that are likely to yield to a non-convexity in the forest production set: the existence of large fixed costs associated with the production of one good (e.g., timber); and the existence of inefficiencies in the timber production process. The empirical significance of such circumstances is evaluated with the aid of a simulation model developed for a lowland tropical forest in peninsular Malaysia. Results suggest that, for certain benefits associated with forest diversity, specialized use (separation of conservation and timber production processes) is likely to be a strategy superior to multiple use
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