VERIFOR: Institutional Options for Verifying Legality in the Forest Sector

February 2005 to January 2010

'VERIFOR' is a project of the Forest Policy and Environment Programme. The project is being implemented in association with three international partners: CIFOR Central Africa office (Africa), RECOFTC (Asia), and CATIE (C/S America). It has a value of €2.4 million over four years (2005-9), funded by European Union Tropical Forest Budget Line, and the Governments of the Netherlands and Germany.

VERIFOR is concerned with the policy, institutional and legal challenges around the issue of illegal logging. It seeks to help tropical producer countries verify that their timber has been legally harvested. In line with the EC's FLEGT Action Plan, the focus is on the provision of equitable solutions that do not have adverse effects on the poor, and which support the principles of good governance and hence relates to the accountability work of Rights in Action. It addresses the institutional dimensions, and the ways in which national ownership can be built up in a manner compatible with international credibility and legitimacy (rather than, say, technical aids such as methods of log tracking). A central preoccupation is the policy arena and policy challenges. Thus, it goes beyond the issue of criminality and will make a contribution to poverty reduction through national-led processes.


Legal Timber? Verification and governance in the forest sector

Public event | 17 February 2009 13:00 - 14:30 GMT+00

This meeting will introduce the new ODI book Legal Timber. It investigates a topical issue in international forest policy: how to verify the legality of traded timber in ways that will satisfy both the commercial interests of producer states and the social and...


Legal Timber: Verification and Governance in the Forest Sector

Books or book chapters | December 2008 | David Brown, Kate Schreckenberg, Neil Bird, Paolo Cerutti, Filippo Del Gatto, Chimere Diaw, Tim Fomété, Cecilia Luttrell, Guillermo Navarro, Rob Oberndorf, Hans Thiel, Adrian Wells

This book investigates a topical issue in international forest policy: how to verify the legality of traded timber in ways that will satisfy both the commercial interests of producer states and the social and environmental concerns of civil society and...


Verification of legality in the forest sector

Articles and blogs | December 2006 | David Brown

Will the verification of legal timber provide a way to address the severe governance problems that beset the forest sector while also securing the public interest and the livelihoods of the forest-dependent poor?


Developmental Impacts of Verification Systems in the Forest Sector

Briefing papers | November 2006 | Kate Schreckenberg and Neil Bird

Covers both the direct impacts of the verification process itself and those indirect impacts arising from the use of the products of the verification process.   To-date, there has been much less consideration of the developmental impacts of proposed...


Strategies for Independent Monitoring

Working and discussion papers | July 2006 | VERIFOR

This paper considers options for independent monitoring of the timber trade, as a component of verification systems. It presents various possibilities relating to verification design, and poses a series of questions regarding the timing of monitoring...


On Independence in Verification Work

Briefing papers | April 2006 | David Brown and Josephine Tucker

The issue of independence goes to the heart of the questions: ‘who is verification for?’ What constituencies should it serve? How can it be given credibility?


The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change

Research reports and studies | March 2006 | Leo Peskett and David Brown

This paper describes the verification system for gas emissions, which is managed by an international secretariat but based on national reporting.


Ghana's Experience in Timber Verification System Design

Research reports and studies | January 2006 | Neil Bird, Timothée Fometé and Gene Birikorang

The timber sector in Ghana is characterised by poor levels of governance. However, there is increasing demand for improved transparency and accountability within the sector, much of this led by an emerging national civil society concerned over forest use....


The Kimberley Process Certifi cation Scheme for Rough Diamonds

Research reports and studies | September 2005 | Ian Smillie

The Kimberley Process Certification System (KPCS) for rough diamonds is an outcome of what came to be called the Kimberley Process, initiated in an effort to end the phenomenon of ‘conflict diamonds’, or ‘blood diamonds’.