Forest and Society
Vol. 2 No. 1 (2018): APRIL

From voluntary private to mandatory state governance in Indonesian forest certification: Reclaiming authority by bureaucracies

Agung Wibowo (Universitas Palangkaraya)
Lukas Giessen (- Chair Group of Forest and Nature Conservation Policy, Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Büsgenweg 3, 37077 Göttingen. - European Forest Institute)

Article Info

Publish Date
26 Apr 2018


Forest certification has been introduced by non-state actors as a voluntary and market-based instrument addressing forest problems, which state policies failed to resolve. Lately, however, state-driven forest-related certification schemes can be observed, e.g. in Indonesia, through the EU FLEGT-VPA negotiation process. It is argued, specific state agencies in a struggle for power and authority develop mandatory certification schemes which are directly competing with private ones. Before this background, the aims of this study are: (i) describing the current trend from voluntary private to mandatory state certification schemes in Indonesia, (ii) mapping the main actors involved in certification politics, and (iii) explaining this trend with the interests of the main actors. The results confirm a trend from voluntary private to mandatory state-driven certification of forest management. The Ministry of Forestry, the Ministry of Trade, the Ministry of Industry, wood producer and processing associations, European Union, local funding organizations, environmental organizations, certification bodies and international buyers are detected as the main coalitions and actors in the certification politics. The stronger coalition develops a mandatorily-timber legality verification system as strategies to counter their voluntary private competitor schemes.

Copyrights © 2018

Journal Info





Agriculture, Biological Sciences & Forestry Environmental Science Social Sciences


Forest and Society is an international and interdisciplinary journal, which publishes peer-reviewed social, political and economic research relating to people, land, and forests. Forest and Society has main geographic focus on Southeast Asia but we do not limit research possibilities that compare ...