Title of symposium:
Socio-ecological dimensions of forest transitions and second growth forests in tropical landscapes

Sarah Wilson, Naomi Schwartz, Trevor Caughlin, Sean Sloan, Elena Lazos

Symposium Summary
Many areas across the tropics have recently experienced gains in secondary forest cover, even as forests continue to be cleared elsewhere. These second-growth forests have great potential to sequester carbon, conserve biodiversity, and contribute to livelihood strategies, and because of this forest restoration has become an integral part of many national conservation and sustainable development strategies. The strategic plan of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity for 2011-2020 aims to restore 15% of all degraded lands by 2020, a target consistent with the 150 million hectares set by the Bonn Challenge and the New York Declaration on Forests. Understanding what drives reforestation, the ecological and social attributes of the forests they produce, and their dynamics over time is essential to creating strategies and policies to promote reforestation.

Over two sessions, this symposium will explore the dynamics of reforestation and restoration efforts, identifying key factors for long-term persistence of reforestation and success of restoration efforts. Much of the research presented has been under the auspices of PARTNERS, an interdisciplinary research network of anthropologists, economists, forest ecologists, foresters, geographers, landscape ecologists, political scientists, sociologists, reforesters and restoration professionals from around the world who share a deep interest in forest regrowth in the tropics. Speakers present a wide range of issues and case studies that link people with reforestation, including the ecological, spatial and social dimensions of forest transitions, the challenges of governing different reforestation scenarios, and the cross-disciplinarity required to produce solutions that work for people and forests.

List of speakers and presentation titles:

Session 1: Unpredictable and uncertain trajectories of tropical forest recovery

Sloan, Sean, Kim, Do Hyung, Meyfroidt, P., Grau, R., Rudel, T., Chazdon, R., Bongers, F, James Cook University.
“Have tropical planted forest landscapes yielded enduring new tree cover? A pantropical survey for 1990-2010.”

Nanni, Sofía., Sloan, S., Grau, R., Graesser, J., Aide, M., Edwards, D.P, Universidad de Tucumàn.
“Neotropical reforestation hotspots: Biophysical and socioeconomic typologies of contemporary forest expansion.”

Oldekop, Johan, University of Sheffield
“Disaggregating national forest regrowth across geographical scales: land tenure and drivers of the forest transition.”

Dr. Catarina Jakovac, Instituto Internacional para Sustentabilidade, Brazil
“Temporal dynamics and the ecological quality of secondary forests in the Brazilian Amazon.”

Dr. Trevor Caughlin, Boise State University, USA
“Spatial models to link landowner decision-making with tree cover dynamics in Southwestern Panama”

Dr. Naomi Schwartz, University of Minnesota, USA
“Implications of unpredictable trajectories of second growth forest cover for carbon sequestration potential”

Dr. Rakan Zahawi, University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA
“Ephemeral forests: rapid re-clearing of secondary tropical forests in southern Costa Rica”

Dr. Deli Zhai, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, China
“Gains of natural forests after decades of forest losses in Xishuangbanna, China”

Dr. Pushpendra Rana, University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign
“Predicting the Long-term Social and Ecological impacts of Forest Plantations”

Session 2: Socio-ecological dimensions of reforestation and forest transitions in the tropics

Chazdon Robin, University of Connecticut and University of the Sunshine Coast Arun Agrawal, University of Michigan
“Effective governance of forest landscape restoration: Learning from multi-level, adaptive, and polycentric approaches.”

Wilson, Sarah Jane, PARTNERS, University of Connecticut.
“The two forest restoration worlds – why restoration ecology needs to consider livelihoods.”

Herbohn, John, University of the Sunshine Coast, Australia.
“Family-based community forestry - a new way to look at the organisation and over enhance of forest restoration in complex social landscapes.”

Dr. Shivani Agarwal, Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment, India
"Role of forest institutions on socio-ecological dynamics of deforestation and reforestation in Central Indian dry-deciduous tropical forest"

Lazos, Elena, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
Luis García Barrios, Ecosur-Chiapas
Marcela Jiménez
“Dynamics and meanings of tropical reforests for rural livelihoods in Mexico”

Dr. Jeanine Rhemtulla, University of British Columbia, Canada
“Restoring landscapes and livelihoods in Malawi”