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Gender and Green GovernanceThe Political Economy of Women's Presence Within and Beyond Community Forestry$
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Bina Agarwal

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199569687

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199569687.001.0001

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Connecting with Civil Society

Connecting with Civil Society

Weaving a Web of Strategic Alliances

(p.363) 10 Connecting with Civil Society
Gender and Green Governance

Bina Agarwal

Oxford University Press

This chapter begins by summarizing the book's main empirical findings, which show that women's presence makes a critical difference to all aspects of forest governance: effective participation, rule making, violations, forest condition and the distribution of forest produce. It then examines how women's numbers and voice, and especially poor women's numbers and voice, can be increased in CFIs. A way forward can lie in women forging a web of strategic alliances with other civil society organizations, especially local collectivities of women. Women's self-help groups (SHGs) in India, of which there are over 2.2 million, are one example of such organisations. Many SHGs have also formed federations. The chapter considers the potential benefits of such alliances between CFIs and SHGs, and their federations as well as the lessons offered by the nation-wide Federation of Community Forest Users in Nepal (FECOFUN). It also highlights the need to energize forums of public deliberation in which women can participate, in order to broaden understanding and bridge differences across gender and class.

Keywords:   civil society organizations, federations, public deliberation, strategic alliances, self-help groups

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