Are REDD+ community forest projects following the principles for collective action, as proposed by Ostrom?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Forested countries in the global south that have agreed to engage in REDD+, a policy mechanism for addressing climate change, are receiving support to improve laws, policies, systems and structures. As a mechanism initiated at the global level and seeking to use forests to address a global commons crisis (atmospheric carbon concentration), understanding how REDD+ translates into implementation at the local level is essential. Therefore, using a systematic review approach, we examined 15 studies of REDD+ in the context of public and/or community managed forests, drawn from a comprehensive application of inclusion criteria to identify relevant published peer-reviewed empirical research. The common property resources literature was used to highlight the role of local institutions in REDD+ and to distil how REDD+ community forest projects conform to Ostrom’s collective action principles. The review revealed limited sharing of information and decision-making authority with communities; a general absence of FPIC; and a lack of defined benefit sharing and conflict resolution arrangements in many of the REDD+ projects.


External organisations
  • University of Reading
  • University of Oxford
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use
  • Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)


  • Climate change, Collective action, Forest, Local communities, REDD+, Systematic review
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)572-596
Number of pages25
JournalInternational Journal of the Commons
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Publication categoryResearch