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Community forestry and reducing corruption: Perspectives from the Peruvian Amazon

Indigenous communities play an essential role in successful forest conservation. Forest governance regimes led by Indigenous peoples can be “as effective as (or even more effective than) traditional protected areas in buffering against deforestation and forest degradation” and “formal recognition of Indigenous Peoples’ rights over their forest lands can also slow deforestation” (Fa et al. 2020).

24 May 2022
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Main points

  • Land grabbing and illegal logging, and the corruption that facilitates them, creates significant disruptions in the lives of Amazonian Indigenous peoples: they lose territory, food, and income, as well as their cultural heritage and sacred places. They also face acts of violence by criminal organizations like drug and land traffickers and illegal loggers.
  • These abuses occur with authorities either directly participating or neglecting (via underfunding) bodies that could sanction illicit acts. Interviewees perceived problems and delays in land titling to be intentional bureaucratic efforts to undermine their rights and a form of “corruption.”
  • In this context, several reforms, many of which are well-known but as yet unimplemented, are needed before community forest management initiatives in the Peruvian Amazon will be feasible and sustainable.

Cite this publication

Gianella, C.; Cárdenas, C.; (2022) Community forestry and reducing corruption: Perspectives from the Peruvian Amazon. Bergen: U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre, Chr. Michelsen Institute (TNRC Publication 2022:3)

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About the authors

Camila Gianella

Camila Gianella is a social psychologist with a PhD from the University of Bergen, Norway. She is a researcher at Chr. Michelsen Institute and Global Fellow at the Centre on Law and Social Transformation, and her research focus is on rights-based approaches to health. Gianella is also the lead researcher on the Peru component of the Targeting Natural Resource Corruption Project.

Cynthia Cárdenas

Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia


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This work is licenced under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International licence (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)


Photo: Camila Gianella CC BY-NC-ND