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View the documentEconomic constraints and incentives in agro-forestry
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View the documentSome tenurial and legal aspects of agro-forestry
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Economic constraints and incentives in agro-forestry

J.E.M. Arnold


The term agro-forestry has been used recently to cover many dissimilar systems and activities. It is used in this paper to describe any situation in which trees form part of the agricultural production system. The focus throughout is on the developing world, with emphasis on the small farm.

Discussion of the economics of agro-forestry defined in these terms must centre on its costs and benefits to the farmer- what costs he faces which discourage or prevent him from incorporating tree systems, and what returns and other benefits could he obtain from them. Costs and benefits to a poor farmer, living partly or wholly within a subsistence system, take forms other than cash outlays and incomings. Prominent among his implicit calculations is usually consideration of risk; the need, when living at the very margin of existence, to avoid any change which might leave him even worse off than he is now. Discussion must therefore reflect these and other realities which shape the farmer's economic decisions, and must not be confined simply to monetary assessments of profitability.

Intruding on the farmer's decisions there are often the interests of government in encouraging agro-forestry in order to stabilize land use, to diminish environmental and resource damage, and to develop forest resources at low cost. These benefits spread much more widely than just to the farmers concerned, but are usually achieved only by imposing additional costs upon them. The paper therefore also considers the implications of the differences in economic objectives and impacts as seen by the farmer and by the general community.

A further issue that needs to be addressed concerns the differential impact of programmes to introduce agro-forestry activities upon different segments and members of a community. Some are likely to benefit more than others; some possibly are excluded altogether from the benefits or are even disadvantaged by the changes. The equity and distributional aspects of agro-forestry projects are therefore also reviewed.

In the next section of the paper economic benefits are listed, with economic constraints and costs in the following section. The final section reviews various measures that can be taken to make agro-forestry systems viable and attractive, by reducing economic constraints and capturing economic potentials.

Many of the constraints discussed in the paper reflect basic changes and disruptions in rural societies and economies in the developing world. A full treatment of the economic parameters of present-day agro-forestry systems would need to take into account a wide panorama of changes and change agents affecting the viability and function of rural social institutions and farmers' attitudes. Frequently, basic institutions such as the community are breaking down without any mechanism for replacing the services they provided. Growing pressures on the land have widely reached the point at which the perception of farmers of their needs and their abilities to meet them - have drastically changed.

In order to reduce the subject to manageable proportions the present paper focuses rather narrowly on the immediate impacts of these broader changes on the viability and acceptability of agro-forestry systems. However, what is being described is often but a symptom of much more fundamental pressures, and needs to be kept in mind in discussing the subject.

Economic Benefits and Incentives

The widespread occurrence of trees in traditional agricultural systems throughout the tropics provides evidence of the benefits that farmers obtain from their presence. These benefits can be divided into a number of broad categories,

The most widespread benefit from agro-forestry systems is their function of maintaining or restoring the productivity of the land. This underlies all systems of noncontinuous cultivation which incorporate a period of tree fallow in the farming system; and as Jackson has pointed out, a widespread flaw in programmes designed to modify or replace shifting cultivation is the failure to recognize the fallow as an integral part of the agricultural system. The soilenriching impact of trees is also commonly one of the principal economic incentives to participation in taungya and taungya-type rotational systems within the forest; they provide the farmer with access to fertile land (King 1968).

Trees also perform this soil-enriching function in certain permanent cultivation systems; for example, being intercropped as alley crops to raise nutrients to the surface layers of the soil through litter or green mulch, a function often combined with addition of nitrogen through use of leguminous tree species. In other words, they provide a lowcost alternative to fertilizers and soil conditioners. Trees are also employed to protect the soil, by providing shade, shelter from wind, protection from destructive rain impact on the soil, reduction in soil loss through row plantings to check runoff, etc.

A second widespread beneficial impact of trees is in increasing the total output of the land by adding a tree crop to one or more lower layers of crops. The intercropped species selected have root and above-ground structures which make complementary use both of different layers of the soil and of the space exposed to sunlight above the soil surface. A wide variety of such vertically structured multiplecrop combinations are found in the tropics.

Associated with this benefit is the advantage obtained by diversifying the range of outputs from the farm, by including a number of products of tree species in order to reduce the risk to subsistence or income due to the failure of individual crops, and to provide usable or saleable produce over a wider seasonal time-span than would be possible with only one or a few crops. In one of the more commonly occurring agro-forestry systems, the home garden, tree crops provide products which complement the high-calorie foodstuffs grown elsewhere in the farm system (Wiersum 1981).

A third category of benefit is that of raising incomes by exploiting tree crops which provide higher returns from the land than alternative crops. Recent studies have shown, for example, that eucalyptus grown on irrigated land in Gularat, India, to produce poles and firewood for sale (Gupta 1979), and Albizzia falcataria grown on agricultural land in Mindanao, Philippines, for sale as pulpwood (Hymen et al., n.d.) produced higher returns to the farmers than the agricultural cash crops they displaced.

By better use of available resources, trees can also be an additional source of income. Less labour-intensive systems of tree-growing can be used to allow farm families to utilize more of the available land; tree-growing is less tied to seasonal patterns than most crop production and, where land is not a constraint, more use of labour resources is possible than with agricultural crops. This, for example, was an important factor in bringing about the increase in the net incomes of the pulpwood tree-farmer programme in the Philippines described by Matela.

Tree products can equally contribute to reduction in costs. Materials needed to meet essential local needs, such as fuel, forage and building materials, may be provided at lower cost by growing trees rather than using alternative sources of supply.

Trees can also provide a capital reserve for use in emergency, or to meet exceptional cash outlays. Trees are widely grown for this purpose by farmers; as they do not have to be harvested at a particular time, and usually accrue in value over time, they have unique value in this respect.

Usually the tree component of an agricultural system contributes more than one of the above economic benefits. For example, the leguminous Acacia senegal planted in the fallow areas in Sudan, not only enriches the fallow, it also produces a marketable product - gum arabic - which is an important source of income to the farmers, as well as fuelwood, fodder, fibre for rope-making, and other outputs of local value.

Economic Costs and Constraints

The economic pressures militating against agro-forestry systems are of two overlapping kinds. There are the pressures which are causing the breakdown of existing systems, and the destruction and removal of the trees they contain (as is happening, for example, to the village tree resources of the plain areas of Bangladesh and the gum gardens of the Sudan), and there are pressures which discourage the introduction of trees in situations where there are no trees in the agricultural system at present.

The most widespread constraint to both retaining and adding trees is probably that of growing competition for land under pressures of expanding populations on a limited land base. Though trees constitute a productive element in so many traditional agricultural systems in the tropics, and are essential for sustained production from the land, as land becomes scarcer the overriding need to produce food and income in the short term naturally takes precedence over these longer-term values. A central challenge in introducing agro-forestry systems is to be able to do so in a manner which meets these immediate needs as well as the longer-term aims of stability and sustained productivity.

This conclusion about the impact of growing pressure on the land base needs to be qualified. Some of the more widespread agro-forestry systems - the home or tree gardens of Asia and the compound farms of Africa where themselves responses to earlier, slower increases in pressure on the land. As the forests receded farmers took to planting tree species of economic value on the farm, usually around the house, working out over time the most efficient and sound mixture and structure of different species (e.g. Okigbo 1977). In this way trees have been maintained in large numbers even in such densely populated areas as the plains of Bangladesh and Java.

Such systems have often proved very resilient; in Java their area has even increased as population has grown in recent times, apparently because their productivity is higher than the areas devoted solely to crops. However, eventually even these systems break down. As overall farm size decreases with the fragmentation accompanying population growth, the proportion devoted to home gardens rises at the expense of the area of staple food crops. But when farm size falls below a certain point, farmers increasingly forego the tree products in favour of staple food-crop production (Wiersum 1981).

This underlines a basic constraint in most agro-forestry systems in terms of their contribution to alleviating the situation of the very poor: that it is often difficult to adopt them on very small farms, and that they contribute nothing directly to the landless unless schemes can be devised to give these people access to land.

Population growth also endangers existing agro-forestry systems through the resultant growing pressure on the tree resource, raising the value of the latter to the point at which economic pressures to cut and use it exceed its value as a continuing part of the agricultural system. Recent work in Bangladesh has shown that the villagetree resource though it is comprised mainly of fruit trees planted in the village areas - is being cut at a rate far in excess of its replacement, principally to provide fuel. With the other locally available organic fuels from agricultural wastes already fully used, the tree resource provides the only reserve from which to accommodate the rising fuel needs of growing populations. At the same time this population growth requires more housing in the village area, so reducing the area available for the tree resource (Douglas n.d.).

A powerful component in the increase in economic pressures to cut and use existing tree resources is the growth in urban and industrial demands for wood - in particular for fuelwood and charcoal. Again, however, it is necessary to recognize that rising values for tree products also provide a major economic incentive to investment in husbanding and growing trees. Brokensha and Riley (1978), for example, have described the process in an area in Kenya of transformation of wood from an abundant, free item to a commodity of value, to be brought under control, protected and perpetuated.

Shifts in the values and costs of other uses of the land can also have impacts on trees and agro-forestry practices. Corvanich has described an example of market pressures which have encouraged farmers to introduce crops which directly or indirectly lead to the removal of trees. "Modernization" of tropical agriculture, and the economies of scale, support services and marketing opportunities it attracts, favour monocultures which replace the traditional multiple cropping systems of tropical agriculture in which trees often featured. Similarly, trees are also usually incompatible with mechanization, creating impediments to the use of machinery, and are therefore removed. New varieties of tea and coffee to be grown in the open also result in the removal of the shade tree intercrop.

The discussion so far has been mainly in terms of economic pressures which discourage the retention of trees in existing systems. There are also economic costs for farmers in introducing trees. One of the most important of these is the relatively long production period of most tree species. Poor farmers can seldom divert resources from producing to meet immediate needs for food and income to a tree crop which will start producing returns at best a few years into the future. Hence the widespread preference in agro-forestry for fruit trees and other tree species which yield outputs of value other than wood, and do so early in their production cycle.

The length of the production period imposes another economic constraint; it increases the level of risk for those, such as tenant farmers or farmers practicing shifting cultivation on state land, who do not have security of tenure of the land they cultivate. Few will invest in a long-term crop such as trees if they fear that they will not be present to harvest the returns in the future. Thangam and Corvanich have pointed out that this is a fundamental constraint to agro-forestry; to rectify may well need changes in basic legislation affecting control of the land.

Sheng has drawn attention to a number of other features of trees which could make them costly to the farmer - for example, competition with neighbouring crops for water, nutrients and light; and emission of substances toxic to other plants. It is important to recognize both what the costs of trees are to farmers, and also that these costs may weigh much more heavily in his economic calculations than in those of a forester or entrepreneur. Protection of trees against livestock or termites, for example, may impose a cost greater than the farmer can meet. Formulation of viable agro-forestry packages depends very heavily on being able to identify tree species which do not place such "costs" on farmers - a characteristic likely to outweigh such conventional forestry choice criteria as yield and form in the farmer's calculations (Poulsen 1981).

Although, as has been pointed out earlier, agro-forestry activities may sometimes enable economic use to be made of surplus labour, in other instances shortage of labour may prove to be a serious constraint. Some agroforestry operations are likely to compete with peakseason labour demands. In off-season periods labour often migrates to work opportunities elsewhere. Some of the operations, such as the logging of smallholder-grown pulpwood in the Philippines, may require labour inputs in excess of what can be provided by the farm family, so that they have to hire additional help.

There can also be more fundamental economic pressures preventing or discouraging farmers from introducing trees into their agricultural practices. Farmers in the developing world are widely faced with pressures to change their agricultural system, changes which usually cannot be accomplished solely with traditional knowledge, skills and resources. During the transitional period to the new system the farmer is likely to find it difficult to abandon such traditional practices as burning and overgrazing which are inimical to tree-growing (Openshaw and Moris 1979). Similarly, the tradition of investing wealth in livestock in grazing systems in Africa has persisted because alternative investment outlets have not been developed in these systems - to the point where livestock numbers build up to levels which result in destruction of the tree vegetation (von Maydell 1979). As was pointed out in the Introduction, some of the constraints to agro-forestry thus stem from the much wider changes and disruptions that are occurring in the rural societies and economies of the developing world.

Matching Agro-forestry Activities to Economic Opportunities and Constraints

Some of the more important measures often needed in order to remove or reduce economic constraints to adoption of agro-forestry practices (and to realize the economic opportunities) involve institutional and legislation change. Initiatives in these areas are usually needed to resolve issues concerned with community level organization and management, government support to the participants and their training in new skills, and the critical issues of security of tenure and distribution of benefits. As institutions and legislation are the subjects of two other sessions of the workshop they are not discussed further in the present paper.

Analysing the Situation

The task of defining viable, acceptable, agro-forestry projects rests very heavily on success in identifying the relevant factors in the local situation. Some agro-forestry programmes, such as those described by Thangam, are very complex, being designed to provide alternatives to shifting cultivation which entail changes to the whole way of life of the people concerned. As he explains, a whole range of investigatory measures will be needed in such cases, in order to understand what might be successfully achieved.

Even where the agro-forestry project is no more than the insertion (or modification) of a single element in a system, it may have numerous interrelationships within the system which need to be properly understood in order to be able to identify how to intervene to improve the situation. For example, fuelwood supply and use in a rural village is likely to be influenced by other economic values of local trees, availability of alternative organic fuels (dung, crop residues), and other economic uses of these materials, access to land and uses of that land, village power systems, pressures on farm and household labour budgets, and differential sets of priorities and values within the village - to name but some of the relevant factors (Ready, in press). Without a sound understanding of all these relationships, it is unlikely that it will be possible to define the interventions which will have the desired effect.

Identifying Costs and Benefits

Equally important is the correct identification of the costs and benefits to the different protagonists. Calculation of benefits and costs from points of view of the village and of the forest service will generally lead to different assessments of the same project (Romm 1980). The objective of a forest service in a taungya project, for example, is usually establishment of plantations at low cost. The objective of the participating farmers is to improve their food and income situation. Common features of taungya practices imposed by forest departments in pursuit of their objectives impose costs and constraints on the farmers which are increasingly unacceptable to them. A survey of taungya farmers in southern Nigeria in 19751976 for example, showed that the physical labour involved, the restrictions on cropping practices which curtailed the cash income potential, the insecurity, and the lack of social and physical infrastructure and services, all acted as negative factors, most of which could be partly or wholly rectified by changes in the way taungya is applied (Ball 1977). Failures in the past to adapt the system to farmer objectives as well as forest service objectives have led one recent writer on the subject in India to describe it as "frankly exploitative in concept and operation" (Seth 1981). It is the exploitative nature of past applications which are largely responsible for the widespread breakdown of traditional taungya programmes in recent years, due to their rejection by participants and potential participants.

Similar divergencies of interest and perspective arise frequently in projects designed to replace shifting cultivation by settled agricultural practices where the latter require substantial investments in soil conservation structures (such as terraces), the benefits from which are as much environmental protection for populations elsewhere as increased income to the farmers. Where such disparities in purpose and impact arise, mechanisms must be devised for transferring resources so as to produce a favourable benefit-cost relationship for the villager as well as for the government. Examples of such transfer mechanisms are the subsidization of input and capital costs reported by Heymann, and found on a much larger scale in such successful programmes as village forestry in the Republic of Korea (Gregersen 1982), or the incentives given, amenities and services provided, and marketing facilities arranged in the taungya-type projects described by Thangam.

Support mechanisms need to avoid creating a dependency upon outside inputs on the part of the recipients which would undermine their ability to become self-sufficient in operating agro-forestry systems. This concern has led to extensive debate over whether or not to pay for local labour inputs into agro-forestry projects. It is often argued that only voluntary provision of labour is compatible with the degree of commitment to the project necessary for its success. On the other hand, the community may be so poor and heavily burdened already, that it would simply not be able to cope with the additional tasks associated with the project unless it was accompanied by additional income from wages for the work done. Similar arguments have arisen over whether or not planting stock should be provided free of cost. Clearly there is no single answer to such questions. They have to be decided on a case-by-case basis.

There are two other aspects of the differences in the value different people involved place on the socioeconomic impacts. One is the conflict (discussed by Hoskins) between indigenous and modern; the failure to recognize that for many rural people it is the variety of nonwood products from the indigenous forests which are of value - products which are not yielded by plantations or woodlots, the outputs from which often do not have value to the people dependent on indigenous forest. Projects which shift the use of forest land towards wood production may severely disrupt not only the subsistence base of forest people, but also the source of livelihood of often enormous numbers of other people, very often the landless and the poorest in communities, who gather and sell products from the forest (Arnold 1981).

The other point concerns the need to assess costs and benefits as they are actually perceived by the farmer. As has been noted earlier, in terms of the farmer's objectives, resources and constraints, the costs and benefits of trees are likely to be widely different from, say, the costs and benefits of the same tree to a forester.

Distributional and Equity Issues

The problem of divergent impacts of costs and benefits also arises very widely within the community. An agroforestry project is unlikely to have a similar impact on all groups or individuals within a village. Hoskins has shown how important needs and perspectives within the community can be - and often are - overlooked or incorrectly interpreted in the identification process, leading to projects which neglect, or even adversely affect the landless, herders or women, for example.

However, the problem goes far beyond that of correctly identifying all those concerned, and of defining their needs and possibilities. Even if this is achieved, the much more difficult task remains of devising project interventions which can meet the needs of all. As Bishop points out, those with larger farms and greater resources are more likely to be able to benefit from an agro-forestry innovation than small farmers. Similarly, in grazing systems, those with larger herds are more likely to be able to benefit from an expansion of tree areas to provide arboreal forage than the poorer members of the community who possess fewer animals (Horowitz and Badi 1981).

The task becomes even more difficult and intractable if the objective is to use the agro-forestry activity as a tool to achieve a positive distributional effect in favour of the poorer parts of the community. Noronha (1982) has drawn attention to the many divergencies and conflicts of interest within communities under the heterogenous conditions found in India and many other parts of the world. Cost and benefit impacts of tree projects are likely to be different for different income groups, for different users of the land, for different components within the village power structure, and even - within the family - between men and women. For communal tree solutions to be feasible, there needs to be a tradition of communal action, the presence of communal land, and labour available at the right time. To succeed, agro-forestry projects need to be based on groups with shared economic objectives and situation, and a measure of socio-cultural homogeneity, which may often mean smaller groups than a village or the community (Noronha 1982). Recent work in Tanzania suggests similar conclusions (Skutsch et al. 1982).

The problems associated with the inequalities underlying these distributional aspects and equities have deep institutional and political roots, and to remove or ameliorate them could require far-reaching changes. Indeed, it has been recently argued that unless there is an egalitarian distribution of land, village-level forestry projects cannot reach those in most need of them - the poor and the landless (Agarwal 1980).

Economic Dimensions in Project Design

There remain a number of more narrowly operational measures which can contribute to economic viability and acceptability. Tree systems will seldom be interesting to farmers and other rural people unless they produce tangible short-term economic benefits. This can be achieved by using, or including, species which produce such benefits as fruits, fodder, etc., which mature early in their life cycle, as is described by Heymann and Thangam, or by using very fast-growing wood or fibre species, or by incorporating complementary income-generating activities such as mushrooms, kudzu fibre, etc., in village forest projects in Korea (Gregersen 1982), or honey, tasar silk, etc., produced in forest areas in Java (Soekiman and Banyard 1978).

Even with short gestation periods for tree products, the time horizons or capital costs may be such that farmers or communities need financial support until the trees are generating income. Credit for agro-forestry needs to be available on terms which are compatible with the timing and nature of the cash flows in and out of the project. For example, a recent evaluation of a smallholder tree-farming project in the Philippines by the agency providing credit to the farmers showed that the grace period and repayment terms had been consistent with the tree production period, but that the loan size and timing had not always matched the heavy expenditure the farmer incurred in harvesting the trees, and the credit procedures had discouraged the agricultural component by requiring the farmer to take out separate loans for trees and crops (Hymen et a/., n.d.).

Access to credit usually requires the farmer to be able to provide security for the loan. In the absence of legal ownership or tenurial rights, such security may be difficult to achieve, increasing the risk from tree crops. Certain economic measures can help reduce the risk element. Heymann has drawn attention to the importance of ensuring the marketability of the products before introducing new species of fruit trees to rural people. In the agro-forestry project, to produce pulpwood as a smallholder crop as described by Matela, firmer assurances of market and price, embodied in formal agreements with the purchaser, were needed to make tree-qrowing acceptable to the farmers. Heymann also underlines the importance of quality in relation to price and market acceptance, and yield, and the role of training and extension in transmitting necessary new skills and experience.

Agro-forestry systems can often be more complex than existing crops and farming practices. As Cornavich points out, ability to acquire the necessary skills will be influenced by the literacy of the people involved. This factor underlines yet further criteria which, together with training and extension, impinge upon consideration of the institutional aspects of agro-forestry which are discussed in another part of the workshop programme. Generally speaking, new activities will be absorbed and adopted more easily if they are familiar, are related to traditional technology and materials, and if individual changes are kept small and simple. This seems to apply as much to agro-forestry as to diffusion of new technology in general (National Academy of Sciences 1982).


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Arnold, J.E.M. 1981. "Forestry for Community Development: A Problem Statement." Prepared for the XVII IUFRO World Congress, Kyoto, Japan, September 1981.

Ball, J.B. 1977. "Taungya in Southern Nigeria." Project working document, FAOIUNDP Forest Development Project NIR/71/546-14, Ibadan, Nigeria.

Brokensha, D. and B. Riley. 1978. "Forest, Foraging, Fences and Fuel in a Marginal Area of Kenya." Paper for USAID Africa Bureau Firewood Workshop, Washington, D.C. Social Process Research Institute, University of California, Santa Barbara, Calif.

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There was a need to assess costs and benefits, in particular how these were perceived by the small farmer who might have quite a different scale of values from the conventional economist, or from the specialist in agriculture or forestry. A number of examples were given. Quite often trees were not valued primarily for the wood they produced, but rather for some other property; for example, in Peru, for demarcating field boundaries; in Nigeria, for providing leaves for wrapping foodstuffs. A farmer might retain valuable trees for use by his sons, to build houses when they married, rather than cutting them for sale at the theoretically optimum time. The farming methods and other practices of small farmers in the tropics were mainly directed towards minimizing risk, rather than maximizing profits.

Farmers would be willing to engage in agro-forestry if they were sure that the benefits they received outweighed the costs (which might include such things as the sacrifice of leisure) they incurred. But the benefits must be such things as the farmer himself valued. It was often difficult for extension workers to know what farmers' priorities. as perceived by the farmers, were. Much more information was needed on this, and on the processes of decision-making by small farmers. To obtain this information extension workers needed a new approach, with fewer preconceived ideas. They must be prepared just as much to learn from farmers as to try to teach them. The agroforestry extension worker not only needed to be trained in new techniques but in new attitudes towards farmers.

The costs and benefits from agro-forestry might not accrue to the same sectors of society. For instance, if one of the benefits was reduction of soil erosion - and hence of silting in streams - the beneficiaries would be people living in the valleys, rather than the farmers on the hillsides. Thus the valley dwellers, or the state representing society as a whole, should be prepared to pay part of the cost, or to give other incentives to the hill farmers.

Such incentives could be in the form of cash, reduction in taxation (which would only benefit wealthy farmers) or granting security of land tenure. Other incentives could be in the field of general social development, such as the provision of roads, water supplies and schools. There was, however, the problem of directly linking these social activities, in the mind of the individual farmer, with the agroforestry activities he was being encouraged to undertake.

Many agro-forestry activities would, of course, be of direct benefit to the farmer practicing them. It was necessary, however, to ensure that these benefits went to those who really needed them, and not only to large landowners. indeed it might happen that large farmers became better off, while smaller farmers and the landless suffered. Precautions should be taken against this.

In introducing new ideas considerable thought should be given to the effect they would have on existing social structures. However, some change in social structure might be essential if certain schemes were to be implemented successfully.

There was some discussion on whether agro-forestry should be developed from the top down - from government to farmer - or from the bottom up - from farmer to government. In practice both approaches were needed. Governments must prepare plans for land use on a national scale (or even in co-operation with other governments, on a supra-national scale), and must make provision for finance and staff. Farmers, on the other hand, must be involved in planning agro-forestry schemes at the local level. They should be able to say what they want and expect from the schemes, and should be encouraged to put forward their ideas on running them. Without this the success of the schemes was much less probable.


Agro-forestry, the rural poor, and institutional structures

Kamla Chowdhry


The Freiburg Workshop on Problems of Agro-Forestry was intended to focus attention on the social. economic, institutional and legal aspects of agro-forestry programmed. Foresters and other professionals involved in studying and implementing various kinds of agroforestry projects were invited to write papers sharing their experiences, in order to highlight the social, institutional and legal factors that need to be understood for successful implementation of agro-forestry programmes.

Review and Comments on Papers

Nine papers from different countries were sent to me for review. In reading the papers I was struck by the "two culture" phenomena. The foresters and other related professionals mainly discussed the technical aspects of agro-forestry problems - aspects relating to land, soil conditions, water harvesting, production methods, ecological degradation, watershed planning and integrated area plans. The aspects of better understanding of people, and of the strategies to be used to obtain participation and collaboration of the so-called beneficiaries tended to be overlooked. The importance of people-oriented approaches was realized by almost all, but the problem was dealt with by normative statements such as "farmer participation is one of the most crucial problems of developing agroforestry", "unless people are convinced of the advantages, the proposed method would not be possible", or "cultural environment must be taken into account." These "ought" statements did not help the reader to find ways and means to find out how, under what conditions, with what kind of people, and under what social and cultural factors participation would be feasible.

Indications from several papers were that "top-down" approaches were being used, that governments and donor agencies were assisting in transforming societies, and that implementing officials were the principal agents of change. In the paper by the sociologist, the "bottom-up" approach to the problem and modes of attacking it was emphasized. She clearly brought out the importance of first understanding the needs and the experience-based knowledge of local people before new projects are formulated for their benefit. Examples were given where good projects backfired because unrealistic assumptions were made of the needs of local people.

In most papers it was assumed that experts and technocrats have a body of specialized knowledge which defines their comprehension of situations, problems and solutions. What was not brought out was that experts and their knowledge often have built-in biases and assumptions, which need to be re-examined in relation to the new situation and people concerned. Who defines the problem (the professional expert or the so-called beneficiaries), is significant because the definition of the problem in itself confers control over the situation. The professional reformer defines the problem in ways that maximize his own power and control over the situation. Similarly the beneficiaries are likely to define the problem in ways meaningful to them and which give them the control of resources.

Out of nine papers reviewed only one paper was by a woman. It was interesting that only in this paper was the problem of agro-forestry discussed from the perspective of women. In agro-forestry projects, especially those having components dealing with fuel, fodder, animal management, etc., women are the main workers. And yet it was rare to find that projects were formulated taking into account the needs and activities of women. With "male" and so-called "developmental" perspectives, projects often end up by making drudgery and the quality of life worse for women.

A recent example is from a remote Himalayan village, Dungra-Paitaoli, where women defied their menfolk in deciding on the choice of land use and protection of trees. The men wanted to sell a nearby forest to the Uttar Pradesh government so that it could be converted into a potato farm. But the women defeated this move. They already spent several hours collecting firewood and would have to spend more time walking, at least another five kilometres every day, to fetch fuel and fodder. The men wanted a potato farm for its cash income which they could convert into drink, but also for other "benefits of progress" a motorable road, a bus connection, perhaps a school which they hoped the potato farm would bring.

Influential villagers including the village head did not like the women's protest. They turned the question of land use into a men versus women issue and warned the villagers against accepting the leadership of women. They spread rumours that the village had been blacklisted because of the women's movement, that their youth would not be recruited to the army nor would the village be supplied with essential items like salt and kerosene. These rumours frightened the women but they were not prepared to withdraw their decision.

The Dungari-Paitaoli women have raised pertinent issues. as did the women in Upper Volta described in Dr. Hoskins' paper (Hoskins 1982). In effect they are saying that since the impact of deforestation falls largely on them, they should have the primary right to manage their forests. They are also challenging the right of men to be the sole decisionmakers when it is the women who spend long tiring hours everyday collecting firewood.

In discussing participation and the impact of projects on village communities, it is important to consider men and women separately. For instance in the Himalayan district of Chamoli, the Chipko leader, Chandi Prasad Bhatt has been organizing ecodevelopment camps to involve the villagers in tree plantation programmed. When the village assembly was first asked to make its choice of trees to be planted, the men immediately answered: "Fruit trees". Fortunately, the women, who had tasted success in the Chipko movement. argued vociferously that these trees would not benefit them at all. They said, "the men will take the fruits and sell them by the roadside. The cash will go to buy liquor and tobacco. No, we want fuel and fodder trees." Finally, both types of trees were planted, the fruit trees because otherwise the men would have lost interest in the ecodevelopment camps. Similar differences were found between men and women in other camps. It was also interesting to note that when the forest department was approached for seedlings of fuel and fodder tree species, it had either fruit trees (men's trees) or trees which yielded good commercial timber. It had few women's trees.

There is enough evidence pouring in from the developing world, whether in Asia. Africa, or Latin America, that unless women are involved in the mainstream of social and economic activities development will not take place. Policymakers, government officials, and analysts are usually male and seldom take into account women's specific interests and needs in the processes of economic growth and improving quality of life.

Participation of women and other disadvantaged groups in policy-making and administration becomes meaningful to the extent that participation challenges social assumptions and forces officials to confront the falsity of their assumptions, exposes gaps in their perceptions and, it is hoped, helps them to take corrective action.

In most papers the implementing agency for new agroforestry projects was the government, mostly in the form of a forest department or a forest development agency. How do forest dwellers perceive the forest officials and the forest bureaucracy? Do the village people see the forest policy as helpful and the forest officials as agents of change in development? In general, the relationship has not been a happy one. The colonial heritage is continued by the black and the brown sahibs of the bureaucracy. In the Chipko movement, in the Himalayas, the local people have fought against forest policies and against forest officials and contractors to save their forests and villages. In 1972 the Forest Department gave a contract for ash timber to Simon Company, a manufacturer of sports goods, and denied the same wood to the local people who used it for making agricultural implements. The local people refused to let the contractors cut the trees by Chipko, i.e. clinging on to the trees. The movement spread from village to village. The women were the most active, for they knew what forests meant to them. Finally the government apppointed a committee to assess its policy of cutting trees in the valley, and its potential dangers of causing landslides, floods and erosion of river banks and hill slopes. The committee's findings were the same as the wisdom of the people, and it recommended a moratorium on tree cutting. It was only a strong people's movement that could challenge government policy; otherwise the poor villagers are too weak and passive to confront the might of the government. Having achieved some success the Chipko movement has now turned towards agroforestry and conservation practices to save their villages.

It is important where "top-down" approaches have been used that there are institutional mechanisms for "bottomup" questioning, otherwise policies and programmes are formulated which are detrimental to the poor. Also, programmes specifically meant for the poor often end up by benefiting the already well off, either because the poor do not know how to take advantage of the various policies and programmes, or because the rich know how to manipulate the system to their advantage, or a combination of both. An analysis of the many "poverty programmes" introduced by the government has shown that the benefits have not reached the poor.

Some papers have pointed out the need to reorient the bureaucracy. This is important if people-oriented approaches are to be used. On the other hand, it is worth asking the question whether the problem lies in the existing attitudes and behaviour of bureaucrats, or in the bureaucratic structure and its familiar pathologies - such as inappropriate procedures for developmental activities, literal emphasis on rules, generalist training, frequent transfers and postings, authoritarian and regulatory methods, intrabureaucratic conflicts and lack of coordination, etc. Reform measures when undertaken are sporadic, slow, and so far without any major impact on the system.

The financial aspects of agro-forestry projects were mentioned in several papers. Detailed cost-benefit analysis figures, however. were not worked out. In Gujarat, progressive farmers have found that with an investment of 20,000 rupees per hectare for eucalyptus plantations they can obtain a return, after expenses, of 50,000 rupees per hectare over a five-year period, thus earning 6,000 rupees per year profit (Gupta 1979). Calculations indicate that the farmer is earning an internal rate of return of 13 per cent per annum. If the small and marginal farmer were to go in for such investment where would he turn for credit? What role can the banks play in providing easy access of credit to the small farmer? What other institutional mechanisms can be designed not only for access to credit but also to provide seeds, technical information and other inputs? The whole question of financial and other infrastructural support. including marketing and legal services for the small and poor farmer, needs to be considered in an integrated fashion if agro-forestry and afforestation of wastelands and degraded lands is to be tackled seriously.

In India the average price of fuelwood in industrial centres has increased 611 per cent over the last two decades. However, the benefits from this price rise have largely gone to the intermediaries and not to the poor farmers.

It is evident from the various papers that the scientific and technical knowledge required for agro-forestry programmes exists. There are international as well as national research establishments which work on tree species, soil conditions, grasses, water harvesting, production methods, etc. Progressive farmers have utilized this knowledge and arrived at a mix of practices which yields optimum results and considerable financial benefits. However, the problems of working with the small farmer. of working on village and community lands, and of evolving institutional structures that deliver technical and managerial services that do in fact reach the poor, are the key problems that need to be addressed. These are. in other words. problems of social organization and management and of developing institutional structures relevant and responsive to the rural poor.

The Rural Poor

In order to design institutional structures to provide services - technical, social and managerial - to reach the poor, and to give them the power needed for effective social and agro-forestry programmes, it is essential to understand the nature of the poor and their relationship to bureaucracy and other resource-allocating structures. I shall present two cases which I hope will convey more realistically the problems of the poor in dealing with existing social and bureaucratic structures.

Case 1: Tribal Families of Balaheda

Balaheda has 260 families in the village (Bordia, 1979). Two-thirds of the land is irrigated. About 10 per cent of the families own 50 per cent of the irrigated land, and 40 per cent have small irrigated land holdings of up to two hectares. The remaining 50 per cent are the rural poor consisting of small agriculturists with unirrigated land, and tribal people whose source of income used to be collection of lac but whose income from this has disappeared with the depletion of forests. The tribal families have no land, there is 100 per cent illiteracy; and their skill in lac collection is no longer useful to feed their families. As would be expected, they are deeply in debt to the local money-lender.

At the suggestion of a local voluntary agency sixteen tribal families decided to seek a loan for the purchase of a buffalo each. They found that the local village credit cooperative society would not give them credit since they had no assets. With the assistance of the voluntary agency, a young bank agent who was a friend of the head of the voluntary agency agreed to provide the credit required for the purchase of the buffaloes. The sixteen tribal families then found that the common village grazing ground of 200 hectares was unavailable to them. It seemed that the custom was that grazing facilities were available only to those who had three head of cattle or more. Discussion and pleas with the local panchayat (village council) were fruitless. Approaching the local bureaucracy was found to be equally sterile. Unable to deal with the local power structure and the local bureaucracy the sixteen tribal families decided to sell their buffaloes. But even this step they could not take, for in order to repay the loan they would have had to sell whatever meagre possessions they had. At this stage the voluntary agency took up the matter, consulted the revenue law governing grazing lands, and obtained an injunction from the civil revenue courts which stated that the common grazing land could also be used by those possessing only one head of cattle.

The next battle was with the bureaucracy of the railways. Milk had to be transported every day by four tribal families to block headquarters where it was sold to a government dairy collection centre. The local railway authorities, who were supposed to provide the prescribed railway concession for transportation, would not do so because the tribal families did not know how to fill in the right forms and what procedures to follow to get their application considered. The tribal families decided to go in a delegation to meet the divisional railway superintendent at Kota, an expensive and time-consuming journey they could ill afford. The meeting lasted exactly four minutes with zero results. The voluntary agency, again through personal contacts, and through newspaper publicity, finally secured them the desired railway concession.

The case illustrates the gap between the tribal families and the development agencies, the importance of "social structures," "power" and "class interests." The tribal people's access to institutional resources whether for credit, inputs, media or legal services was well nigh impossible without a sympathetic intermediary.

Development activities involving the poor - whether in dairying, agriculture, agro-forestry, health or education threaten to upset the delicate social and political balance existing in a traditional community. New opportunities for the poor are difficult to open and even more difficult to develop successfully without some strong outside help and intervention.

Case 2: A Marginal Farmer

Professor Ravi Matthai of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, tells about the case of a marginal farmer who had wanted a small loan from the Small Farmers' Development Agency. In order to apply for the loan the farmer needed a record of his land holding size. The marginal farmer went to the talati, a junior government functionary in charge of land records in the village. The talati wanted a bribe of 50 rupees for providing this piece of paper. The marginal farmer was advised that there was strength in numbers. He collected a group of twenty other marginal farmers to march to the talati's office to protest against his behaviour. Just before they reached the office their courage failed. When people are living a marginal existence it is difficult for them to take a step which would earn them the displeasure of the talati, a petty officer who wields enormous power in the village since he is the keeper and the manipulator of land records. The rural poor with impoverished backgrounds are ill-prepared to deal with the talati of this world unless they are supported by strong intermediary agencies who can fight on their behalf.

Exploitation has become a way of life for both the exploiter and the exploited, passed on from one generation to another. To stand up against exploitation, to refuse to give a bribe, to unite in the form of a co-operative or a movement all such actions require self-confidence, an asset which the poor and the deprived do not possess.

In a recent International Workshop on Law and Resource Distribution in Singapore (Paul and Dias, in presse) the participants agreed that the most readily identifiable reasons for access difficulties centred in the bureaucracy. Case after case, country after country. cited the rebuffs and anxieties suffered by the poor at the hands of arrogant officials imbued with a superiority complex towards them. The uneasy client is curtly told to wait, often for hours, or is scolded for something or other. Some of the papers mentioned the need and necessity of reorienting the forest bureaucracy. This is certainly important, but it will not be easy. For too long the relationship has been of suspicion, mistrust and hostility. Participation, communication and collaboration under such circumstances is likely to be an uphill task.

It is clear from the two cases discussed above that structures of resource allocation are heavily weighted against the poor. This may be because of social and psychological reasons or class and caste differences, but the net result is the exclusion of the poor from the main stream of development. Alternative institutional structures are necessary which can not only help the poor and fight on their behalf but can also provide technical, managerial and other skills necessary for projects to succeed.

Institutional Structures

The most important programmes in social and agroforestry development have been initiated by government. The problem, however, is so enormous that there is need and scope in addition for voluntary and non-government agencies to work on these important issues of fuel and fodder on the one hand, and of conservation and ecological improvement on the other. I discuss below four kinds of institutional structure which have undertaken or have initiated social and agro-forestry programmes.

Bureaucracy: Government Programmes

The forestry departments of various states, encouraged with increased allocations from government and funds from the World Bank and other donor agencies have expanded their departments and embarked on ambitious programmes. We will examine here the social and agroforestry programme of Gularat State which is considered one of the most successful of these.

The forests of Gujarat cover 1.96 million hectares about 10 per cent of the area of the state. The financial allocations for social forestry have increased from 0.4 million rupees in 1970/71 to 119 million rupees in 1981/82, an increase of 297 times over a twelve-year period. The department has undertaken strip plantations on roadsides, canal banks and railway sides; woodlots on village community grazing lands; reforestation of degraded forests; agro-forestry on private agriculture lands of poor tribal people; and farm forestry. The various programmes are suitably planned, implemented and monitored by the Forestry Department. Evaluation indicates that agroforestry programmes with progressive farmers on private lands have succeeded, as have plantations on roadsides and canal banks, and reforestation of degraded forest lands. But programmes focused on the rural poor have not been able to generate their participation or enthusiasm, a situation which seems to surprise the government officials because of the built-in advantages for the beneficiaries.

Regarding the woodlots programme on village grazing lands the report states: "Though the village woodlot scheme stands to benefit the village community individually as well as collectively, it has uniformly remained more or less a government programme." Regarding the programme for tribal people (malki lands) the report states: "The involvement of the tribal occupant of the land who stands to gain considerably from this programme has not been found to be adequate. A majority of the beneficiary occupants have shown little direct involvement in the plantations."

Government programmes, whether in Gujarat or any other state, have not been able to get local participation a precondition considered essential for the success of social and agro-forestry programmes. Also, as discussed earlier, delivery systems for the poor, whether in terms of credit, inputs, health or education, do not seem to reach the intended beneficiaries. The poor are either too weak or do not know how to defend their interests. In general, bureaucratic structures as at present constituted are grossly inadequate for tasks calling for solutions at the local level. Institutional alternatives which are more flexible and responsive at local levels need to be considered.

Co-operatives: National Dairy Development Board (NDDB)

Development planners and administrators including foresters have realized that (1) development plans from above have to be complemented by development from below; successful programmes in agriculture including agro-forestry require the inclusion and integration of marginal and disadvantaged groups; and (2) there should be a shift in strategy from an emphasis on achievement of targets to questions of equity, because of the entrenched power of vested interests.

In India one of the most successful programmes, which has helped bring out the potential creativity of the weaker sections and integrate them into the modernization process, is NDDB's Operation Flood. Operation Flood is based on a three-tiered structure of co-operatives which has organized the rural milk producers into powerful cooperative federations owned by the small producers. It has already organized 1 million farmers in over 5,000 village co-operatives. In its next phase it plans to organize another 10.2 million families. The Government of India has also requested NDDB to use its strategy and structure to organize farmers producing oilseeds, jute and vegetables, and those engaged in horticulture, fisheries and, most recently, energy plantations. Because the model developed has been extraordinarily successful it is worth considering it in terms of agro-forestry projects. The elements of the model that need to be highlighted are as follows:

Spearhead Team
The NDDB sends out a 'spearhead team' consisting of four to six professionals to the village where a cooperative is to be established. The spearhead team lives in the village and discusses with the villagers the importance of the co-operative, of organizing themselves, of the professional inputs required for increased productivity and incomes, and of marketing to benefit the producers. The spearhead team performs a consciousness-raising function and opens the door for further action. The team is conscious of the need to establish a relationship of trust, over a period of time, before they initiate a process of self-organization and change.

A farmer cannot be properly understood except within the context of his own special "universe." The universe includes all those things which influence his attitudes and shape his behaviour, the experience he is exposed to and that which he is deprived of. The spearhead team is taught the concepts of deprivation and powerlessness in order to realize how a person becomes what he is.

Local Team
The spearhead team begins to identify a local "shadow team" which can visit the headquarters at Anand (Guiarat), talk directly to the farmers already organized, discuss with them their fears and doubts, see for themselves the functioning of the co-operatives, and learn about the veterinary services and their organization and other related matters. In general, the "shadow team" goes through an excellent self-learning process. On their return to the village it is the "shadow team" that organizes the village co-operative and the various activities associated with it.

Village Co-operative
The members of the new milk producers' co-operative elect a managing committee at the general meeting. The managing committee elects its own chairman, and appoints a secretary, a milk tester and a milk collector from the village community. The local members learn the beginnings of organization and management. Such an institution, they understand, replaces the more exploitative structures that have kept them in a state of dependency. With such an institution functioning in their midst they can see that their own actions have made a difference, that it is possible to improve their lot and that it is worth the effort and the risk.

Supporting System
The organization and efficient functioning of village-level co-operatives is not likely to survive opposition by the traditional vested interests unless it is supported by a strong infrastructure with committed young professionals, and also strong governmental support. NDDB has a mobile veterinary route, a planning division which surveys potential milkshed areas, an engineering division which builds processing and fodder plants, a research and development division for new products, a national milk grid which uses computers to keep information on the demand and supply of milk from various state level federations, and a centre for training and developing the rural managers needed. The three-tiered cooperative structure is a powerful means of dealing with complex village-level problems including social, technical and political problems. In the case of Balaheda this massive support system was missing. Without such a support system the developmental activities do not sustain themselves. In addition there are problems of getting large financial resources, and of capital accumulation, infrastructural networks, and non-exploitative linkages which need to be established and nurtured.

The model for organizing small farmers and the support system developed has been described in the case of milk co-operatives. I do feel the model has promise, with modifications, in organizing the tribal people and other small and marginal farmers for agro-forestry projects In fact the Gujarat government has recently appointed a working group to visit agro-forestry projects in the state as well as the NDDB co-operatives and their fodder farms, and recommend a viable model, with people's participation and control, for a massive programme of social and agroforestry.

Preliminary visits of the team have confirmed the proposition that wood co-operatives could be organized, and that members (especially the small farmers and landless people working on strip plantations on canal banks) would benefit enormously. In the present system the advantages of improved technology and increased prices bypass them because they have no market knowledge, and intermediary agents and contractors exploit them. The co-operative structure would establish its own nurseries, provide inputs and technical, managerial and marketing services, and also a mix of practices that would optimize land-use patterns. Within NDDB the establishment of a social forestry wing, to which experience could be transferred, is being considered; it will later be hived off to form an independent agency.

Professional Society: Society for Promotion of Wastelands Development (SPWD)

India has an area of over 300 million hectares of which nearly half, or about 150 million hectares, is not used for agriculture. Twenty per cent of this non-agricultural land is either in the high Himalayas above the tree line or in arid deserts where plant life can hardly be sustained. Of the remaining 120 million hectares, about one-third is in reserved forests under the direct management of state forestry departments; the remaining two-thirds are under private ownership, or are village and revenue lands. These lands are undergoing rapid degradation. They constitute the "waste lands" of India, although they are highly suitable for fuel and fodder trees and various kinds of scrubs and grasses.

Around 100 million people - the poorest in rural India, including tribal people and other disadvantaged groups depend on these forests and waste lands for their livelihood. If these waste lands could be brought into productive potential through programmes of social and agro-forestry, then the problem of energy and ecology, as well as the problem of unemployment and income generation for the poor, could be resolved.

An informal working group of key Indian leaders of government- Planning Commission. Department of Forestry, Department of Environment- private and public sector corporations. national banks. and community-based organizations. came together to establish a nongovernmental, non-profit organization called the Society for Promotion of Wastelands Development (SPWD). The principal objective of the society is to work with existing governmental, corporate and voluntary organizations to help promote the development of agro-forestry on lands owned by village and governmental organizations. The society provides technical services. training and information, and. in some cases. financial assistance to local communities wishing to implement agro-forestry projects. The principal financial support comes from funds of government and corporate members of the society in their own projects. In addition the society helps arrange bank loans to village level and other organizations for project support. The two largest banks of India are members of the society and have pledged credit support for these projects. The working philosophy of SPWD is based on the following premises

- The participation of poor people is essential to project success. It is realized that the enthusiasm and co-operation of the poor can only be generated by projects which yield an immediate sustainable and substantial economic return. The poor cannot be expected to sacrifice present income for long-term and uncertain rewards.
- The organization must ensure the equitable distribution of benefits. For such projects effective organizations are often community based, but they need the constructive support of government departments and regional institutions in research, training, planning and implementation.
- The community-based organization must be well managed. Many rural development projects fail because of weak management and because they do not take the time and trouble to overcome the initial scepticism of the participants.
- Appropriate and useful technical information must reach these organizations in forms they can understand. The problem is compounded by lack of audio-visual materials and arrangements for nonformal education of men and women implementing the projects.
- Because the people dependent upon the productivity of the waste lands are poor, external financial inputs will be required.

The Society for Promotion of Wastelands Development is based on the recognition that there are many business corporations who wish to pursue social priorities effectively. The government, too, encourages such corporations by giving them tax exemptions for expenditure incurred on such activities. The business corporations have the skills of organization and management, which are crucial inputs for any programme in agro-forestry. The business skills will be linked with local-level agencies providing them services required for profit at the local level.

How far the new Society for Promotion of Wastelands Development will fulfil its promise of utilizing productively the "waste lands" of India with primary benefit to the poor is yet to be seen, but the enthusiasm for the basic concept is considerable by all concerned government, corporate sector, financial institutions, voluntary agencies and professionals.

Community-based Approach: Village Reconstruction Organization

The Village Reconstruction Organization (VRO), India, was registered under its present name in 1971, although Father Windey, its founder, began activities in Andhra Pradesh in 1969 after the disastrous cyclone in coastal Andhra. Previously Father Windey worked in one of the worst famines of Bihar in 1966/67. With the co-operation of local government Father Windey took up the reconstruction of ten of the poorest villages affected by disaster. Along with the rebuilding of entire villages he organized education and health services and incomegenerating activities for these villages. VRO also carried out socio-economic and land ownership surveys of rural communities affected by the cyclone.

Since 1969 VRO's activities have spread to several other states. The Orissa government invited Father Windey after major floods which wiped out hundreds of villages. VRO's experience is rooted in a systematic endeavour to press for deep-reaching changes and relatively more permanent improvements after natural disasters - and the Indian subcontinent is not short of these. It has projects in about 150 villages, largely in remote areas where various aspects of cumulative poverty are found together. VRO has a professional staff of 300 consisting of graduates in various disciplines, architects, engineers, nurses, doctors, etc.

Before a village is taken up for reconstruction, the village community has to give demonstrable evidence of working together as a community. The villagers may work together on a well, a village road, a community woodlot, or on some other community asset. After the community has demonstrated its ability to work together, a formal document is signed between VRO and every member of the community (thumb impressions of 80-100 villagers) agreeing to contribute labour and to abide by other agreed conditions of working and living together. A village council is formed consisting of five men, four women and four of the youth of the village. The council manages the reconstruction of the village, plants trees along the village road, and later initiates developmental activities necessary to the village.

Only recently has Father Windey realized the socioeconomic implications of social and agro-forestry for the rural poor. With the existing infrastructure of the VRO Council, consisting of village leaders, and the village council, consisting of local people, VRO has planned nurseries, roadside plantations, woodlots and related agroforestry projects. In its training centre it is training villagelevel workers in starting nurseries, soil testing, managing seed farms, etc.

VRO has a community-based participatory structure. Discussion at meetings is free and easy. Decisions are not made by experts, although experts are consulted, but by the village council taking into account local needs and conditions. What VRO is able to achieve is a good fit between programme objectives, needs of the beneficiaries, and the capacity of the assisting organization.

There are many voluntary agencies working with communities of poor- helping them to organize, to articulate their needs as they themselves perceive them, and to help themselves. The various voluntary agencies in the Chipko movement are outstanding examples of participative approaches to helping the rural poor.


A wealth of information and experience was presented in the various papers reviewed. Some major issues of social, economic and institutional structures have been examined in relation to social and agro-forestry projects as they affect the rural poor. Through the cases and incidents discussed we have been able to glimpse the anger and anguish of the poor and disadvantaged, including women, when policies and programmes were formulated on assumptions which were far from the needs of the so-called beneficiaries. We have shown that beneficiaries need to be clearly defined not merely as village communities. but as rich and poor farmers, men and women. and perhaps other significant categories relevant to local conditions. As professionals and experts we must realize that we, too, have our own special ways of perceiving. defining and creating reality. We begin to understand more meaningfully Humpty Dumpty's statement to Alice, in Alice through the Looking Glass:

"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in a rather scornful voice, "it means what I choose it to mean - neither more nor less." "The question is", said Alice, "whether you can make words mean so many different things." "The question is". said Humpty Dumpty, "which is to be the master- that's all?"

We realized, as Humpty Dumpty did, the power inherent in the right to define a situation.

We have looked at institutional structures, which were "topdown," and "bottom-up," and also two- or three-tiered structures which linked local institutions with strong central services and inputs for the benefit and profit of the local groups. We realize the importance of innovative structures and of management systems for productive utilization of "wasted" resources - whether in land, water, or human beings.

We would like to end the paper by two quotations which sum up the problems of agro-forestry and the rural poor:

Neat and tidy packages prepared by experts to describe the appropriate future energy mix will avail us little unless they are economically significant and socially and culturally acceptable to the people asked to use them. - Soedjatmoko.

We have no power to talk in front of the rich, like the Chairman. We are afraid of them. We are always looked down upon and scolded. So we never know what they are writing and doing. - A landless labourer in Bangladesh.


Bordia, A. 1979. Indian Journal of Adult Education.

Gupta, T. 1979. Some Financial and Natural Resource Managements of Commercial Cultivation of Irrigated Eucalyptus in Gujarat, India. Indian Joumal of Forestry, 2 (2): 118-137.

Hoskins, M.W 1982. Observations on Indigenous and Modern Agro-Forestry Activities in West Africa. Paper presented to the United Nations University Workshop on Problems of Agro-Forestry, Freiburg, June 1982.

Karamchandani, K.P 1981. Gujarat Social Forestry Programme: A Case Study.

Paul, J C N. and Dias, C.J. In press.


In summarizing her paper Dr. Chowdry stressed three points: First, that generally there has been a "top-down" approach to agro-forestry projects. Planners approach a target population with preconceived notions of what they believe is best for the population. The result is failure. What is necessary is a "bottom-up" approach - finding out from the beneficiaries what their needs are and, thereafter, formulating programmes to meet those needs. Second, she challenged the competence of bureaucratic ("governmental"} organizations to meet needs in that they were characterized by inflexibility, working to rule, and reluctance to allow for popular participation. She asked whether one should not also consider voluntary ("nongovernmental") organizations as the main channels of assistance. While government, then, would be concerned mainly with financial assistance and policy formulation, voluntary organizations would mediate between the beneficiaries and government. Third, Dr. Chowdry pointed out that most programmes did not address the weaker ("disadvantaged"} segments of the population who needed assistance most - women, the poor. This was largely because these segments were ignorant about programmes, were denied access to them, and the groups were not in a position to protest. The speaker suggested the need for policies and strategies which involved women and other disadvantaged groups.

Discussion focused on four issues:

Bureaucratic institutions. Should Forestry Departments be abolished? Could they be made more flexible? Why was it that bureaucracies found it so difficult to be peopleoriented? On the other hand voluntary organizations appeared to interact more easily with people. It was suggested that the advantage of voluntary organizations could stem from a lack of vested interests. Most of the participants disagreed with this and contended that voluntary associations could equally develop vested interests.

Co-ordination. As with the previous topic, there was no resolution of agreed perceptions of the lack of, and need for, co-ordination. Is there a need for new institutions to deal with agro-forestry? Some speakers noted that the main bottle-necks to co-ordination existed at the middle levels where officials were particularly concerned with career prospects and protection of their own "empires."

Approaches. There was general consensus that neither a "top-down" approach nor a "bottom-up" approach alone would suffice to make a programme successful. On the one hand the "top-down" approach would fail because it was unrelated to local needs, priorities and resources; on the other, a "bottom-up" approach could fail if technical parameters were not considered. What is needed is a mix of both approaches.

Motivation. An element essential for the success of agroforestry programmes was the ability to motivate participants. Numerous examples were cited of programmes that utilized religious or philosophical principles to successfully motivate change. In effect, it was agreed that incentives to participate were not confined to financial incentives. It was agreed that there were two common components of success in the examples cited: trust and flexibility.

Other issues touched upon were the need for examination of communications techniques and, most important, whether the questions raised were peculiar to agro-forestry or whether they were also common to other types of projects - say, rural development.

One of the speakers concluded with the important recommmendation that future similar conferences should include participants from other disciplines and from among decision-makers (in government, from planning bodies). This would result both in a cross-fertilization of ideas (rather than only an affirmation by the already converted) and a means of influencing policy.


Some tenurial and legal aspects of agro-forestry

S. Kolade Adeyoju

Two major types of poverty exist in most developing countries: urban and rural. Urban poverty is largely the concern of the socio-economic and political experts. However, the causes of urban decay are not altogether unrelated to rural poverty, which is far more profound in its setting and complexity. Fortunately, however, because of low population density as well as poor infrastructural development, rural affairs are generally more amenable to the application of legal instruments than are urban questions.

Over the last eight or ten years, agro-forestry has been broadly accepted as a major strategy for alleviating rural poverty. While there is an increasing literature on the characteristics of agro-forestry and the policies to be adopted in its implementation, the appropriate legal framework has yet to be clearly defined. Although FAO (1978) and Chowdry (19821 have outlined the relevant institutional components of agro-forestry, these synopses do not include indications of the legislation needed. Indeed, it is hardly an easy task to do this because of the innumerable combinations of activities relevant to agroforestry. However, if we view it as a multiple land reform strategy, then we should be able to identify the land use practices which are obstacles to agro-forestry and also to make some suggestions about the set of laws and regulations needed to enhance its productivity. Thus the way in which land is held, inherited, acquired or disposed of, as well as the conditions enabling the farmer to transfer his land from agriculture to forestry or vice versa, or to make combinations of both from time to time, are the main concern of this paper.

Land Tenure and Agro-forestry Development

In all countries the process of agricultural production takes place within an institutional matrix. Within this matrix, the form of land tenure exerts a profound influence on the level and efficiency of agricultural production. It follows therefore that the land tenure system in any country tends to freeze the processes of agricultural production in their existing form. Similarly, the extent of agro-forestry and the involvement of local farmers are directly related to the flexibility or otherwise of the prevailing form of land tenure

For instance, in a society based predominantly on hunting and food gathering - a primitive form of agrosilvopastoralism - individuals attach considerable importance to the land. Man himself makes the minimum contribution to development in these circumstances, although his contribution may include eliminating infestations by insects and preventing depredations by wild animals. In this situation, the land as an input contributes about 70-80 per cent to agricultural development. The minimal contribution of man is matched by the informality that he initially attaches to arrangements for the utilization of land. These arrangements or working rules establish the patterns or modus operandi which all members of the community implicitly or explicitly agree to follow as each individual establishes rights of use over particular areas of land. In the African context, these arrangements have become customs or traditions so that we speak of the customary or traditional land tenure system.

As agriculture is the occupation of the majority of the population of developing countries any programme of development should take into full consideration the institutional aspects of the countries' agrarian structure. The land tenure system is an integral part of this and exists in several forms as shown in fig. 1. It is the family, existing as a corporate body, that has rights of "absolute" ownership in land under customary tenure arrangements. The head of the family ensures security of individual's rights over land through the exercise of rights of management and control as he acknowledges the opinions of other elder members of the family. On the whole, these systems of land tenure are not conducive to plantation agriculture let alone agro-forestry. The reason is that forestry practices are alien to traditional farming. It is no surprise therefore that the Nigerian First Developement Plan, 1962-68, recognizes that "traditional farming methods and systems of land tenure inhibit an extensive use of land for farming." For an extraneous enterprise such as forestry or agro-forestry, the implications may be quite considerable.

Again, the problem of land tenure was succinctly highlighted in the Second Nigerian Development Plan 1970-74. The authors of the plan recognized that "the prevailing land tenure system in the country sometimes hinders agricultural development . . . Ownership and control of food-crop land by individuals tend to be transitory . . . As a result of the system of inheritance, land owned by individuals or extended families also tend to become fragmented and scattered . . . If Nigeria's agriculture is then to develop very rapidly and have the desired impact on the standard of living, there must be reform in the system of land tenure." As this situation is not unique to Nigeria, the relevant solutions may, of course, not be dissimilar in other countries. Therefore if considered from the agro-forestry point of view, our concern with land is in its use and maintenance. Similarly, from the point of view of the farmer as an economic entrepreneur, the concern also focuses on ownership and other tenurial aspects of land.

FIG. 1. Main Forms of Rural Land Tenure

Forest Land Tenures and Agro-forestry

Ten types of forest land tenures have been identified (Adeyoju 1976). Table 1 is a summary of the various tenurial trends and attributes. The remarks for each tenure are largely indicative of the improvement potential. Many of these estates have unsettled tenure and are therefore prone to frequent use transfers. For instance, under types 2, 4, 5 and 10 it should be possible to introduce agro-forestry as a catalyst for tenurial stability.

Considering two factors of land tenure policy - economic efficiency and social progress - Famoriyo (1979) noted that the contribution of agricultural production to Nigerian development is very low. This is because agricultural land is "wasted" and mismanaged. Undoubtedly there is a need to promote more highly efficient utilization of resources through a land tenure policy. This need may be fulfilled by improvements in technology, creating flexibility in the land tenure system, taking adequate measures to prevent fragmentation and consolidating already fragmented areas. These tenurial improvements will be encouraged by agroforestry since this system strongly promotes a more sedentary type of farming than is traditionally practiced.

TABLE 1. Summary of Tropical Forest Tenure Attributes

of Tenure
de jure
Origin or Reason
of Tenure
de facto
Major Effects
of Tenure
1. State forest/
State To ensure minimum land
basis for government
policies desirable for
Generally viewed as the
most satisfactory/
long-term development
2. Communal
To attempt to
"modernize" traditional
Restrictions on use,
but revenue retained
Amenable to tenurialand
management control
by owner
3. Protection
Any To ensure beneficial
forest influences
Restrictions on uses
contrary to purpose of
ecological objectives
Usually subject to strict
management and
4. Protected
Any To stabilize the form of
land use
Restrictions on
conversion to other
land uses
Highly prone to tenurial
5. Protected
forest tree
valuable trees
To control utilization of
Owner Restrictions on Unrenewed resource
6. Private
Individual Extension of ownership
concepts to forest land,
usually in free market
Owner Individual Tenurial stability
guaranteed with
7. Reclaimed
forest land
State Development of marginal
"no man's land"
Usually permanent
because of ecological
8. Timber
To obtain revenue with
minimum management
Temporary use by
grantee under forest
service control
General investments on
the part of timber
magnates and State
9. Timber
To ensure raw material
provision to industry
Temporary use by
grantee under forestry
service control
Possesses attributes of
(8) with greater respect
for traditional rights
10. Rights of
Attempt by state to
recognize certain
elements of traditional
tenure in lands
Specified secondary
use allowed to local appreciation in local
Encourages forestry

Guidelines for Agro-forestry Land Tenures

What has been outlined in the last two sections relates to land tenure under two distinct production regimes agriculture and forestry. Because agro-forestry is a hybrid of the two, and also because planned and systematic agroforestry is only just emerging, no really pertinent forms of tenure can readily be cited. Therefore the purpose of this section is to highlight certain preconditions for tenures, which will be appropriate to agro-forestry.

General Considerations

Flexibility as an objective in land tenure implies that opportunities exist for movement along the agricultural ladder. It means introducing a tenure system which creates opportunities for industrious labourers to become farmers and for ambitious customary tenant farmers to acquire absolute interests in land. More important, it means that whoever wants to practice mixed farming including both specific forest crops and annuals will have authorization and legal support to continue his enterprise until the forest crops are due for hamest. Access to these opportunities should not be hindered.

Consequently, the policy that is envisaged should include provisions for facilities such as credit for capital formation, opportunity to market crops at reasonable prices, and the creation of adequate infrastructures. A system of land tenure that is flexible is never static. Rather, it is dynamic and it changes in accordance with the new social and economic features of the population for whom it is designed.

At present, those examples of agro-forestry that have, in general, been successful have been reported mainly from forest estates in Thailand, the Philippines and Nigeria. In the vast agricultural lands of tropical Africa, agro-forestry has yet to make a breakthrough. The reason is due largely to the inflexible system of land tenure as well as its attendant insecurity. Since the security of rights in land is crucial to agricultural development, measures to preserve such security should constitute the principal element of agro-forestry land tenure. Both accessibility to land and security of interests therein are closely related and should be the core of an agro-forestry land policy. We may therefore agree with Uchendu (1971) that the question of accessibility constitutes "the irreducible minimum criterion demanded for a productive tenure system." This condition is indisputably fundamental to the adoption of agro-forestry by peasant farmers.

Investment in land
The security of interests in land encourages the farmer to make necessary investments. In other words, provision of security creates the opportunity for the farmer to raise the status of agriculture from a susbistence base to one oriented towards investment. Agroforestry is far more capital-demanding than traditional agriculture and thus would constitute a major investment in rural areas.

The most important social objective of a land tenure policy is to facilitate the development of a well-integrated rural community. The trends in agro-forestry are strongly directed towards the development of prosperous rural communities, but again these efforts are localized within consolidated forest estates. Outside the forest estate, necessary incentives should be given to agro-forestry farmers whose willing participation will promote economic integration.

Conflicts and Complementary Effects between Objectives

In attempting to incorporate agro-forestry objectives within the frame of land tenure policy and legislation, it should be realized that objectives may conflict with each other, or, on the other hand, may be mutually complementary. For instance, a close relationship exists between security of tenure and rational conservation of soil in that a customary tenant farmer whose stay on the farm is short does not have a long-term interest in the land. Also a complementary relationship exists between the objectives of flexibility and security in land tenure. Where a land tenure system is sufficiently flexible to accommodate the more efficient methods made possible by progress in agriculture, it is only farmers whose interest in the land is secure and sustainable who will be inclined to adopt such methods.

Even between the two broad goals of economic efficiency and social progress conflicts may arise. For instance, where a political system is oriented towards eliminating the traditional system of agriculture in order to build a new and, it is hoped, more stable system, social progress may be hindered although the economic efficiency of agriculture may be improved. However, agro-forestry as a production system is not intended to eliminate, but rather to ameliorate and, where possible, transform traditional wasteful land use practices. Again it should be emphasized that in the execution of well planned agro-forestry projects, not only are the conflicts that may arise between the goals of economic efficiency and social progress less sharp, but it is often possible to achieve a satisfactory compromise between these goals, or even to make some progress in reaching both.

Legal Reforms to Remove Anomalies

Most of the forms of tenure listed in fig. 1 and table 1 coexist within each developing country. Suffice it to say that most of these forms of tenure are not easily adaptable to agro-forestry. Urgent efforts should therefore be made to redefine and/or codify such conditions and situations as:

- The role of forest reserves particularly with regard to their currently exclusive or restrictive use;
- The type of land usable for agro-forestry and the variety of crops permissible;
- Derivation factors for the sharing of revenue from individual economic trees on farmlands;
- The role of forest guards (protection staff) with regard to their activities outside the forest estate;
- Mandatory technical assistance that should be provided by both the agriculture and forestry departments to agro-foresters; and
- Inheritance of agroforestry lands.

Development Horizon

In the past, the main preoccupation of land tenure was to guarantee succession to rights in land for food production per se. Therefore in that context forestry tenure was alien. In modern times, however, the need to accelerate agricultural production from the vastly depleted soils and for the enlarged population has made land tenure a national rather than a local issue. In the wake of new programmes to increase food production the sacrosant status of forestry tenure is being persistently attacked. Indeed, considerable dereservation has taken place in many places for plantation agriculture of one type or another.

However, agriculture and forestry still remain distinct landuse regimes with their own relevant laws and tenurial arrangements. The food situation in many countries as well as their festering economic and social problems demand that the rigidly separate forms of tenure applied to land used for agriculture, forestry and livestock should be tempered by the startling realities of the day. In a situation in which the forest service is patently locking up land the vulnerability of forest tenure is self-evident. Impetus towards support for forestry will come from a population that is either visibly benefiting from forest management programmes or is less dependent on the agricultural economy. Agro-forestry is undeniably a key programme for mass participation and rural development (Adeyoju 1978), and therefore an indispensable tenurial ingredient. In this connection it should be noted that the real barriers to state action over forest land tenure are political and economic, not legal.

Again an interesting development has been observed in parts of Nigeria. Through the various rural forestry projects the loss of forest land to agriculture has been slightly compensated for by the steadily increasing number of converts to farm forestry. During the last decade the shortages of such produce as wrapping leaves, poles and firewood (which are critical to the domestic and food preparation habits of certain groups of Nigerians), have created a favourable atmosphere for private ownership of fairly large woodlots, particularly in the savannah zone. The thriving small forestry business of these private citizens (however few in number) refutes the previously held maxim that large tracts of forests are necessarily required to support processing plants. These rural forestry projects are generally devoid of tenurial problems in the short run, although the questions of inheritance and of succeeding rotations are still unsettled.

Projects of this type should not be imposed on land held under existing forms of tenure. At present, because the main objective is to satisfy the needs and preferences of local population, the projects are being executed without turmoil or upheavals. Therefore emphasis should be placed on the set of laws and regulations essential to successful agro-forestry in order to dispel the notion that the new efforts are an extension of the old-fashioned forest reservation policy.

If public participation is viewed as a means of mobilizing talent, expertise and special knowledge relevant to agroforestry, then such public involvement is completely consistent with the optimization of tenurial functions which land-use projects are expected to foster. Consequently, in order to obtain good tenurial adjustments and appropriate legislation, all affected parties need to be involved in both preliminary discussions and ultimate decisions.

To summarize. we have attempted as far as we can, to apply the theory of political economy to what has been, in the past, the mutually discriminating nature of agriculture and forestry. In order to develop a coherent philosophy of rural land management, of which agro-forestry is an important part, we should identify and stress the significant similarities and common objectives between forestry and all the other land use sectors. This approach should lead to a clarification of the tenurial options for development and the basis for legislation.

While we have distinguished between the traditional forestry and agricultural regimes, our intention is largely to draw attention to the problem of evolving the appropriate institutional framework for agro-forestry. Much additional work is needed in order to better delineate the variety of traditional land tenures and existing legislation on the one hand, and the requirements of agro-forestry on the other, as well as the means of obtaining the required information. This is a challenge to foresters, agriculturist and other specialists.


Adeyoju, S. Kolade. 1976. Land Tenure Problems and Tropical Forestry Development. FAO, Rome, 36 pp. FO FDT/76/5 (b). -. 1978. "People's Participation in Forestry for Local Community Development." Position Paper 1, 8th World

Forestry Congress, Jakarta, Indonesia, 24 pp. FRC/1-10. Anon. 1962. National Development Plan, 1962 68. The Federal Ministry of Economic Development, Lagos
- 1970. Second National Development Plan 1970-74. Federal Ministry of Economic Development and Reconstruction, Lagos.

Chowdry, K. 1982. Agro-forestry The Rural Poor and the Institutional Structures Position Paper, Workshop on Agro-forestry, Freiburg, 31 May - 5 June.

Famoriyo, S. 1979. Land Tenure and Agricultural Development in Nigeria. The Nigerian Institute of Social and Economic Research, Ibadan, 146 pp.

FAO. 1978. Forestry for Rural Communities. Rome, 56 pp.

Uchendu, V.C. 1971. The Conflict Between National Land Policies and Local Sovereignty Over Land in Tropical Africa. Seminar on Problems of Land Tenure in African Development held at the Afrika Studie Centrum, Leiden, Holland, 13-17 December.


Five main aspects were discussed as follows:

Definition of "Agro-forestry" in order to focus on legal problems
Participants differed in the relative importance given to agriculture, forestry, livestock or general good land use, but laws relating to any of these will affect agroforestry. The exact role of cattle and small stock needs to be established. When are they beneficial and when destructive? What are local attitudes and regulations and government policy regarding livestock? How do tenure regulations relate to which is the best crop to interplant? Some crops such as potatoes and corn may have adverse effects on soil erosion. Fish-farming is another subject which may be integrated into agro-forestry, and will have legal aspects.

Laws protecting whose rights?
There are many conflicting rights - of government, Iand-owners, landless peasants, transhumants and other minority groups ("tribals") some of whom practice shifting cultivation. The latter's rights are often neglected or misunderstood and in some areas (e.g. India) this may affect thousands of desperate people. To what extent do the rights stress land use - or product use? There is an important distinction between rights of ownership and rights of use. "Communal rights" still exist in some areas, but are often highly adaptive to new circumstances, e.g. cocoa in Ghana led to land ownership using modified traditional forms; the mailo system in Uganda promoted cash-crops.

What laws?
There is a wide range of types of law, including national laws, regional or local regulations, and traditional laws regarding rights to land and to trees. The right to trees may not include the right to the land on which they grow. Are there too many laws, as was suggested in Colombia? Or is it inevitable that complex situations necessitate complex laws? What is important is that people have knowledge of the laws, and that laws support effective landuse planning. Some laws (e.g. colonization in Brazil) support "land-improvement" which may mean extensive tree-clearing, other laws over-protect trees, even forbidding a land-owner to fell certain species unless he pays high fees to the government.

Examples were provided from many countries of forest laws not being enforced, from shortage of officials. because people were not persuaded that laws were needed, or because it was easy to bribe forestry officials to turn a blind eye. Many other laws (on agrarian reform, land tenure, tax, marketing) affect agro-forestry, also. "Regulation is inimical to extension." If true, should forest regulatory activities (fees, permits. prosecution, all policing) be separated from educational and extension work?

What are the consequences of laws? Many laws are enacted without a thorough consideration of whether they are enforceable, or appropriate, or of what the benefits and costs will be - and to which groups. It is desirable (where countries have the capacity) to analyse the socioeconomic impacts of proposed legislation before making it into law.

Other Points from Discussion

- It was apparent that although specific situations are very diverse, there are certain universal legal principles which can be used (with appropriate modification) in analysing all cases.
- In considering legal aspects of agro-forestry, we should take a wide view and emphasize an integrated rural development approach, including all other relevant social and economic activities and institutions.
- An important legal aspect relates to the view from below, the knowledge, institutions and perceptions of the local people. Before introducing new laws, officials should understand the existing legal institutions and customs which govern land use rights and the organization of the means of production. In many cases it will be found that traditional institutions are foundering under intense pressures (population increase, land shortage). Indigenous technical knowledge, which includes an extensive knowledge of local vegetation and its properties, should also be taken into account: too often this is overlooked. For instance exotic species are often introduced when indigenous species may be more suitable. Before introducing new legal ways of resolving conflicts, existing institutions and methods should be examined to see if they can be modified and used. Ironically, success in agro-forestry ventures may well lead to an increase in conflict and litigation, as people scramble for new opportunities.
- Bureaucracy-any laws must take into account the existing bureaucratic structure, especially the hierarchy and responsibilities of different ministries. Where inter-ministry co-operation is lacking (a common situation in many vertically integrated ministries) the chance of new laws being introduced and effectively enforced is low.
- Information clearing house: finally, several participants stressed the need for a more effective means of communication, so that we can learn from each other's experiments and errors. Both FAO and ICRAF are working on this problem.


Education for agro-forestry

Peter A. Huxley


In introducing this subject I am making a distinction between "education" and "training" whereby the latter refers to short, or relatively short-term studies of general or particular practical aspects undertaken in order to achieve a higher level of technical or professional skill, and education refers to a broader, longer-term approach to the acquisition of knowledge, techniques and methods, and the ability to utilize them, and which is undertaken in order to achieve a technical or professional qualification. These two definitions clearly overlap and early on we may make several assumptions about the kind of "education" we are discussing. The first is that it is essentially "education for capability," i.e. embracing not only the acquisition of knowledge and the capacity to analyse it (scholarship), but also the development of creative and useful skills and the competence to undertake tasks, and working abilities (capability). The second assumption is that the outcome of such education is going to be, in nearly all cases, devoted to contributing to national development in some way, as well as providing a livelihood for the person who has been so educated.

Because agro-forestry is so relevant to the development needs of tropical and sub-tropical countries the growth of agro-forestry education is likely to proceed even faster in the developing world than elsewhere. There is another factor which may promote this, the fact that many institutes of education in developing countries are less affected by historical constraints and rigid organization, so that they may benefit by a greater infrastructural flexibility. At least, it is to be hoped that this is so! In addressing the possibilities for agro-forestry education I feel that there is room for a very wide range of informed opinion and considered views. In preparing this paper I have, therefore, set some ideas down more in the form of a structure for discussion than as a formal paper. See also Contant (1979), Roche and Cooper (1980).

1. Do we Actually Need to Set up New Programmers or Courses to Teach a Subject Called "Agro-forestry"?

As we all know, to give a precise description of the limits of agro-forestry is not easy and the compilation of definitions for their own sake is certainly a sterile occupation. Nevertheless, it behoves us to know well the nature of the subject we want to teach and a glance at the definitions listed in Appendix 1 shows very clearly that we are dealing, whatever the differences in emphasis might be, with a range of aspects - technical, social and economical, and obviously dynamic - concerned with particular forms of land use systems: the operative word being "systems." We therefore have to teach about systems in a way that not only describes them, but uncovers and analyses the interactions of the system components, understands the processes, and so facilitates an interpretive, quantitative and objective assessment of the characteristics (e.g. productivity, sustainability) of any one kind of system that has to be assessed - a way which also promotes an easy and effective comparison between systems (whether they are classified as agro-forestry, agriculture, forestry or range management) and also one that encourages the promotion of new ideas and developments.

With this in mind we can return to the question at the head of this section. Thus to whatever extent bits and pieces relevant to agro-forestry may be taught- and this issue is raised again in the next section - it cannot satisfy the full conceptualization of the subject, or be of more than limited practical use in producing professional personnel capable of handling real practical development or research situations, if it deals with only some part or parts of what is a system-oriented subject. Bringing agro-forestry situations and examples into courses on soil, plant or environmental studies; commenting in a descriptive way on case studies of land use which include agro-forestry examples in, say, geography courses; discussing the methodology of the economic analysis of multiple output, long-term land use systems; and mentioning agro-forestry examples in an agricultural course programme will all help promote the subject. But a fully comprehensive and integrative approach is needed if capable, operational personnel are to be produced.

Because it already exists in so many forms, and because the understanding of specific agro-forestry situations in the field includes such a highly integrative approach, agroforestry is really an attitude of mind in the first instance. The development of conceptual approaches, which then lead to practical implementation in constructive terms, is so firmly the objective of educational programmed, nowadays, that the introduction of agroforestry programmes should present a very acceptable challenge. But the task should not be underrated. This is because our whole educational system relating to applied environmental science and land management has developed over the last hundred years or so in precisely the opposite direction. The so-called "pure" sciences (which themselves developed from the necessities and importunities of finding practical solutions to day-to-day problems), were paralleled by "applied" sciences and the technological application of the principles involved. This phase of educational development rapidly involved a fragmentation of subject areas as scientific research found the need for a greater analytical appreciation of the complexities inherent in the study of environmental situations, and the need for highly trained scientific manpower to explore and exploit them. This was followed by a period, up to a short while ago, of re-synthesis as it became apparent, with the rapid increase of knowledge about our environment that ensued, that certain "interfaces" between subject areas were, in their own right, equally vital. For example, in my own subject area "pure" botany led to "applied" or "agricultural" botany, which included specialist courses in plant pathology, plant breeding, plant physiology, etc. These developed even further relevance to practical situations as time went by; plant physiology became "crop" physiology for example, and then, in the re-synthesis phase, we had subjects such as crop-ecology, or pest management (as an addition to courses on applied entomology, plant pathology and weed control!. More recently, with the advent of systems theory, additional courses emphasizing the nature and scope of a holistic approach have added significantly to our appreciation of the need to examine and understand interrelationships in the management and improvement of land-use systems. But systems theory is a tool and the mere addition of courses on this subject, rather than basing the whole structure of a programme around the systems concept entirely, can fall short of promoting even a satisfactory mental capability (leaving aside for the moment the acquisition of skills) in those being educated in land management in one form or another. When we come to agro-forestry, the scope is so wide and the integrative nature of the subject so implicit, that my own view is that there is no really satisfactory way of teaching it without building a programme structure on the systems themselves - but more of this later.

Perhaps one example, of the many that could be given, will serve to elaborate the need to change attitudes through education. For many years land resource planners utilized schemes, developed mainly in temperate countries, which have indicated a classification of land in terms of soil, climate, topography, etc. A further extension has been to extend these so as to indicate "land capability classifications". Until recently forestry enterprises related to timber production were in the main relegated to the poorer areas in most cases. Now that foresters and others are well aware that the so-called "secondary" forest products (fuelwood, fodder, food, etc.) are often of equal importance to timber, planting of forest plots on better land is quite in order. Thus this first attitude barrier is now largely being overcome, but there is still some way to go because, over large areas of the tropics and sub-tropics the producer, often working on very small plots, is concerned with selecting from the whole range of suitable and acceptable plant species those which can satisfy his basic needs. He is therefore interested in an appropriate mixture of plant species, some of which can be trees and shrubs (and also vines and palms, if appropriate). In fact trees and shrubs play an important role on so-called "farm" land throughout much of the tropics, but there is still a strong tendency to consider land capability in terms of agricultural or forestry enterprises, and not to evaluate the possibilities of agro-forestry. Until people are educated in the possibilities of agro-forestry land use systems and are able objectively to evaluate these against other existing possible forms of land use, it is difficult to see how matters will change to any extent.

I would unhesitatingly suggest, therefore, that we do need to teach agro-forestry as a specific subject in its own right.

See also Appendix 2, "Action Guidelines on Education in Agro-forestry."

2. To What Extent Is Agro-forestry already Being Taught?

The ready acceptance of agro-forestry as rational alternative land use systems, and the knowledge that trees and shrubs play a range of important roles in the landscape, has resulted in the initiation of agro-forestry courses of one kind or another all around the world. At ICRAF we are interested in collating information about institutes that are involved in agro-forestry or plan to be, and the actual course or programme structures and contents.

No one type of institute or department has the prerogative of teaching agro-forestry and, quite rightly, the subject is, or will shortly be, of active interest in faculties and departments of forestry, agriculture, horticulture, applied ecology, applied biology, geography, environmental studies and resource planning, and probably others. However, not all have the necessary multidisciplinary staffing to do justice to the subject and many are, I suspect, dealing with the subject in a way which separates the components (plant aspects. soil aspects. economics. etc.).

Such subject-oriented classificatory structures may be helpful in ordering our thoughts about what has to be included in a technology programme but, I suggest, they are not the best way of setting about actually teaching it for the reasons that I have set out in the previous section. What has served as a reasonable division and subdivision of subject areas for the organization of scientific inquiry is not, necessarily, the best for an education programme, even if the material for teaching is most readily available in that form.

Certainly, the needs and objectives of different kinds of educational institutes or departments have to be looked into rather carefully, and it would be ill-advised to reach conclusions about this without a good deal more information and thought.

3. What Will Professional Agro-foresters Have to Do?

In theory there is no difficulty in seeing a wide range of opportunities for professionally trained agro-foresters as planners, developers and research workers, for example, and also, in a "secondary" capacity as teachers and extension operators, as well as trainers of both these groups. In practice, there may be some problems. This is because the question above really poses at least one other. For example, we have to be concerned in the education field not only with what part in national (and international) activities professional agro-foresters may play, but whether jobs and career structures are actually open to them at the present time. And, also, some attention has to be given to the infrastructural nature of the organizations within and between which they all have to work.

Although most governments have a ministry of environment and natural resources, or its equivalent, there are very different levels of co-ordination and collaboration with other involved ministries and government departments which may deal separately with agriculture, forestry, energy, livestock, etc. Even where there are inter-ministry coordinating bodies, problems can remain - not the least the effort needed to convert those who have been educated, and become experienced, in the conventional and separate disciplines of "Forestry" and "Agriculture", for example. Until existing structures are re-modelled, or an adequate degree of change of both attitudes and infrastructural organization is achieved, these factors may tend to militate against either the recruitment of professional agro-foresters or their effective use.

Then again many universities and colleges involved with land development have faculties or departments still structured along conventional lines, i.e. department of forestry, agriculture and so on. For those who are going to study agro-forestry the institutional organization of subject areas into "schools" (e.g. school of environment studies, or school of land resource planning, etc.) may perhaps better facilitate the development of a highly integrative subject such as agro-forestry, and also utilize its concepts and practices to better advantage.

One important aspect of education programmes, as we all know, is not just to plan to keep up with the times with new types of programmed or courses, but to provide trained manpower for the development process in the number and types required, and at the time when they are needed and can be absorbed. Most of us here will see this need, but rather careful co-operation with national manpower development divisions may be more than usually a prerequisite for the development of agro-forestry education programmes in any particular country.

In listing some possible professional activities I have just briefly mentioned that of "extension." The functions of government (as well as non-government) organized assistance and control of producers, and the efficacy or otherwise of different approaches to extension, as well as the training needed to achieve competence in these, are outside the scope of this paper. However, I would like to suggest that the more refreshing approach to research in developing countries which we have seen coming about in the last decade could help to remove some of the burden of both transmitting and developing new ideas, methods and materials at the farm level. The key word here is "developing" as, more and more, both research objectives and the steps by which they are achieved, are now incorporating farmer participation. We are all only too well aware of some of the costly and time-wasting mistakes that have been made in the past when purely technical solutions to land use problems have been reached, in isolation, by researchers. The development of many more "on-farm" trials, in which the farmer himself can undertake the management, and at least help with the evaluation phases is now, fortunately, becoming much more commonplace. What is important to us here is that these kinds of activities are not only often more relevant researchwise but they are, in themselves, extension exercises as well.

Because agro-forestry systems are so often very sitespecific there is a very considerable need to develop simple field research methodologies for evaluating both new components and processes (as well as new systems) together with the farmer, and in direct relation to his particular output requirements. Agro-forestry educational processes should certainly emphasize the knowledge, skills and techniques which will enable the recipient to take a full part in this new approach in the research-extension continuum.

In discussing professional education in agro-forestry we must consider not only higher-level but mid-level cadres. These might be expected to be more technology-oriented and to fill lower-level management and junior field research posts, for example. There is no less need for orientation in the systems approach, but we might start further back and try to distinguish between the actual technical skills needed for agro-forestry as distinct from agriculture or forestry. For the time being the practice of agro-forestry (planting, soil management, caring for crops and trees, harvesting, pest management, field procedures) will require only those basic skills which agricultural technologists or forestry technologists can, between them, provide. It may be only an expediency but, for the time being do we really need to do more than combine personnel trained in technologies through existing courses in agriculture, horticulture or forestry? This is an attractive proposition but perhaps basic skills are not enough. The successful application of technology implies a familiarization with the systems, or those being dealt with - the actual handling of particular species of multi-purpose trees, for example. So, although programmes designed to produce manpower fully capable of implementing agro-forestry projects in the field may for now draw on other forms of existing technical teaching quite heavily, some essential parts will still need to relate specifically to the components found in appropriate agroforestry systems. First of all, however, we have to gain an adequate technical knowledge of these - for example, much more information is needed about the management of multipurpose trees than we at present possess.

4. Is there a Case for Developing Agro-forestry Teaching from a "New" Angle?

This question really applies to higher-level professional education - more specifically to full degree programmes. In previous sections, arguments for a systems-oriented approach have been introduced based on the very integrative nature of agro-forestry. These can be extended by two other factors: the time limitations in undertaking programmes which may try to cover both agricultural and forestry components, processes (and principles) in a conventional, course-structured way; and, related to this, the essential need, at this educational level, to treat as much material as possible "in depth" and at a suitable intellectual standard.

We might make two reasonable assumptions. The first, that it is quite unnecessary to cover everything - i.e. students of agro-forestry do not need to be taught to be both agriculturists and foresters. Indeed, I would go further and suggest that, in any first-degree course, filling the mind is a lot less important than training it, so that students of agro-forestry do not need, even at this level, to gain personal knowledge of every single aspect of agro-forestry (as defined in Appendix 1). The second assumption is that the acquisition of knowledge which is itself easily related to practical examples, and which is clearly part of a system (or subsystem), is an economical and effective way of educating for capability. This is because if at least some of the interactive aspects of that particular example can be appreciated (and by observing a practical situation this is made more likely) then the learner is able to relate specific technical knowledge (say the aetiology and epidemiology of a plant pathogen causing a crop disease) to its effects on the system as a whole (the financial costs of controlling it, or not; how labour and skill have to be organized, and so on). Because "teaching by example" is time-costly, its use emphasizes even more the need to take the first assumption to heart.

But I would go even further. And I believe that for an integrative subject of such enormous scope as agroforestry it could be extremely effective. Except perhaps in the first year of an agro-forestry degree programme, conventionally formulated course structures could well be dispensed with and their content, in the main, included as a well-prepared sequence of practical field exercises chosen to illustrate different kinds of systems (or parts of systems). To supplement the field practicals there would clearly need to be "satellite" exercises (lectures, library reading, laboratory practicals) but all with the purpose of elaborating the subject in relation to the system being examined. Ordinary courses on such subjects as "Soils," "Climate," "Plant Diseases," "Animal Husbandry." "Silviculture" would not occur in their usual form. Instead, their content would be included and combined in the field exercise with any necessary elaboration occurring through "satellite" teaching modules.

Such a programme starts in the field and works towards the fine details. Historically, we have tended to treat landuse/land-management subjects the other way round, thereby arriving at the value of a subject to a whole system at the end rather than the beginning. Fig. 1 (taken from a previous paper) gives a brief structural indication of what is intended.

There are two major constraints to the efficient implementation of such a scheme: its dependence on an extremely well-ordered and carefully integrated series of practical field exercises, which would have to have a high degree of reliability in actual operation; and the lack of continuity of staffing which is still a problem in many educational institutes in developing countries. Both can be, at least to some extent, overcome in a similar way.

FIG. 1. Skeletal outline intended to present only a general idea of a course (programme) structure for agro-forestry at degree level. A, B and B., C, C, and C2, etc., are practical exercises chosen both to present a logical sequence and to contain the necessary elements of what would normally be given in separate courses (soils, climate, silviculture, etc.). "Satellite" exercises accompany these as necessary to supplement them with lectures, seminars, laboratory practices, etc. (in some cases preceding or following the main exercise). (Source: P.A. Huxley, 1979.)

Although a poor substitute, well documented (and illustrated) "case" studies of agro-forestry systems,' complete with data, might be used to replace some "homegrown" field examples; or at least kept in reserve in case of accidents. The question of maintaining effective continuity in teaching such programmes might be answered by having the main structure of the programme designed by a group of experts. It could then be provided as a set of elaborated guidelines, complete with suggestions for practical examples and teaching aids, to whatever faculties or institutes required it. There would still be the task of arranging the practicals, but a set of manuals on what to look for, and what to measure, etc., could assist even here. There may be a feeling of revulsion against such a proposal, particularly as lecturers and teachers are usually very independently minded people who wish to teach their own thing in their own way. Sufficient scope for the inclusion of local initiatives within the main framework would, clearly, be essential.

With regard to shorter programmes (one-year diplomas, M.Sc., etc.) there is probably less reason for innovation but, even here, the underlying need to understand and appreciate the highly interrelated parts of an agro-forestry system is still a mandatory feature.

See also Huxley (1976a, 1976b, 1979).

5. What Has to be Done?

Changes in education are usually brought about only very slowly, whereas human response to and realization of new understandings and initiatives can be remarkably rapid (environmental conservation, renewable energy. agroforestry). So although it is accepted that the pace and quality of progress in any aspect of national development is highly dependent on a sufficiency of correctly and adequately trained manpower, it is unlikely that professionally trained agro-foresters will be forthcoming in anything like adequate numbers for some time to come. What is to be done in the meantime? Certainly, as a stopgap, agro-forestry course packages can be included in all kinds of other educational programmes and ICRAF's Training and Education Programme does include a place for the preparation of such a course "package," when resources allow! Retraining of graduates through short-term diploma or M.Sc. courses will not be a difficult thing to start, and this is already being done at several institutes. But this meeting and, at greater length, the forthcoming Workshop on Professional Education in Agro-forestry, will, no doubt, wish to address this question.

If we are going to teach we have to have some materials to teach with. There is an urgent need to organize the collection, assessment, re-formulation and exchange of appropriate teaching materials for agro-forestry courses. A growing number of publications on agro-forestry is now appearing in the scientific press (including a new journal devoted to it, Agro-forestry Systems), and other journals. ICRAF is contributing, along with many other organizations, institutes and faculties; and much of this material can be useful in teaching (for example, see ICRAF's latest "Publication List" and bibliographies from different sources). Existing agro-forestry field projects can provide case study materials of considerable value, and this source can be expected to grow rapidly over the next few years. ICRAF's own programme allows for the preparation of five major separate reviews covering particular areas of agro-forestry (agro-forestry and food, renewable energy, animals, soils and social and economic aspects). There is also to be a "Science and Practice of Agro-forestry" series of small booklets (about 100 pages) each concerned with a particular aspect of agro-forestry research, development or technology.

In a few years, through the combined efforts of those involved and interested, the "literature gap" will at least be partially filled, and it is to be hoped that much of the material to come will be concerned with detailed factual accounts and experimental data.

Perhaps the greatest challenge to be faced will be the changes in attitudes among educators themselves, along with the necessary infrastructural modifications which will be needed even to absorb agro-forestry as a part of existing curricula let alone set it up as a programme on its own.

Appendix 1. Agro-forestry Defined

Agro-forestry is an age-old practice for which modern concepts are only now being developed, so it is not surprising to find that some agricultural and horticultural systems might appear to overlap into agro-forestry (or viceversa). Indeed, one might define agro-forestry as that which is not commonly accepted as agriculture, horticulture or forestry! However, because it is difficult to be precise about the terms "agriculture," "horticulture" and "forestry," a definition is needed to give the term "agro-forestry" some commonly accepted meaning. Its precision will depend on how involved it becomes: the meaning of "agro-forestry" can be stated in a number of ways, depending on the level of discrimination required by those being addressed.

This subject was debated briefly at a conference "International Co-operation in Agro-forestry" - convened by ICRAF in Nairobi, 16-22 July 1979. Some of the suggestions, together with the definition previously used by ICRAF, are given below.

A very simple statement may often be adequate - despite its lack of precision. For example:

Agro-forestry is a form of land use that successfully satisfies the need of the crop farmer, forester and/or stock farmer. - Kabelo Gilbert Mafura, Ministry of Agriculture, Lesotho.

Agro-forestry denotes all activities in land utilization where the production of food goes hand-in-hand with the production of wood (in its widest sense). Soekiman Atmosoedarjo, State Forest Corporation, Indonesia.


Agro-forestry involves the combination of trees in a land-use system in space or time with either crops or animals production, or both, in order to achieve a stable production system for the benefit of rural population. - G. Budowski, Centro Agronomico Tropical de Investigacion y Enzenanza, Costa Rica.

More ideas are brought in by the following:

Agro-forestry is a sound land-use system that integrates trees with crops and/or animals so as to get higher productivity, more economic returns, and better social benefits on sustained basis, than are obtainable from monoculture on the same unit of land. Even for marginal areas and under conditions of low levels of technological inputs. P.K.R. Nair, ICRAF.

Agro-forestry is a socially, culturally, and ecologically acceptable, integrated form of land use involving trees that improves or does not degrade the soil and permits increased and sustained production of plant and animal produce including wood.- R.B. Contant, ICRAF.

Agro-forestry is a sustainable land management system which increases the overall yield of land, combines the production of crops (including tree crops) and forest plants and/or animals simultaneously or sequentially, on the same unit of /and, and applies management practices that are compatible with the cultural practices of the local population.- K.S.F. King and M.T. Chandler, ICRAF, in The Wasted Lands.

Then again:

Agro-forestry should be considered to be a generic term that embraces the following specific components:

Agri-silviculture- the conscious and deliberate use of land for the concurrent production of agricultural crops (including tree crops) and forest crops.

Silvo-pastoral systems - land management systems in which forests are managed for the production of wood as well as for the rearing of domesticated animals.

Agro-silvopastoral systems in which land is managed for the concurrent production of agricultural and forest crops and for the rearing of domesticated animals. This system is, in effect, a combination of agri-silviculture and the silvopastoral system.

Multi-purpose forest tree production systems here forest tree species are regenerated and managed for their ability to produce not only wood, but leaves and/or fruit suitable for food and/or fodder. - K.F.S. King, ICRAF.

More detailed forms might be:

Agro-forestry is any type of multiple cropping land use that:

- entails complementary relations between tree and agricultural crops and produces some combination of food, fruits, fodder, fuel, wood mulches, and so forth;
- is usually, but not necessarily, low input;
- achieves a more efficient use of radiant energy (sunlight), moisture and plant nutrients than is effected by sole cropping or by separate agricultural or tree production systems, reduces or prevents soil and land deterioration processes such as erosion, leaching, and floods, or the effects of excessive insolation on bare soil.
- C.F. Bentley, Chairman, International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics.


Agro-forestry is any land use system that:

- provides fuel as well as tree/shrub products (or the environmental benefits that may accrue from growing trees/shrubs);
- involves multiple, mixed or zonal cropping, with or without animal production, in which woody perennials are grown for more than one purpose together with herbaceous crops or grasses.

Through these combinations agro-forestry aims to:

- maximize use of radiant energy, minimize losses of plant nutrients in the system, as well as optimize water-use efficiency and minimize run-off and soil loss. Thus it retains any benefits in these respects that may be conferred by woody perennials compared with conventional agricultural crops, and so maximizes total output of benefits from the land whilst conserving and improving it. Peter A. Huxley, ICRAF.

Agro-forestry is a collective name for land use systems in which woody perennials are deliberately grown on the same piece of land as agricultural crops and/or animals, either in some form of spatial arrangement or in sequence. In agro-forestry systems, the woody component interacts ecologically and economically with the crop and/or animal components. Such interactions will take many different forms, both positive and negative, and they need not remain stable over time. The aim and rationale of most agro-forestry systems are to optimize the positive interactions in order to obtain a higher total, a more diversified and/or a more sustainable production from the available resources than is possible with other forms of land use under prevailing ecological, technological and socioeconomic conditions. Bjorn Lundgren, ICRAF.

Appendix 2. Action Guidelines on Education in Agro-forestry

Extracted from full set of guidelines on research, development and education drawn up at the ICRAF/DSE Conference on International Co-operation in AgroforestN, 16-21 July 1979, Nairobi, Kenya.

Recommended that:

1. Institutions of higher education in agriculture and forestry collaborate closely and adopt the following measures:

(a) add courses in farming/land use systems and agro-forestry to their undergraduate and postgraduate curricula;
(b) incorporate agro-forestry-related aspects into all relevant existing courses;
(c) identify agro-forestry-related research opportunities in all relevant postgraduate specialization, where applicable, in cooperation with research institutions.

2. Technical agricultural and forestry schools introduce a general agro-forestry course unit.

3. In-sewice courses in agro-forestry, which are urgently needed for the training of teaching staff at all levels, be of the following kinds:

(a) scientific/technical courses at post-M.Sc. level, for different specializations;
(b) technical courses at (post-) B.Sc. level, similar to the agro-forestry courses advocated for regular undergraduate programmed;
(c) special courses for agrarian reform planner and administrators.

4. Regular agro-forestry courses at undergraduate and technical levels be organized on a national rather than a regional basis. Local institutions should, therefore, be made self-reliant as soon as possible by the provision of relevant packages of teaching material.

5. As postgraduate programmes are costly and highly demanding in terms of manpower and physical resources, a regional approach based on the co-operation of a number of universities be followed.

6. In-service courses at all levels be organized on a regional basis at well-equipped faculties of agriculture and forestry, taking into account linguistic and ecological considerations in the choice of locations.

7. Demonstration plots on agro-forestry be established on each of the different ecological zones for the purpose of training professional and technical staff and for the dissemination of information to the public.

8. A modular approach be adopted in the preparation of agro-forestry teaching materials, with the following priorities:

(a) a general agroforestry module, intended as a basis for technical in-service courses and for graduate and postgraduate course units. This module could gradually be differentiated into packages for different ecological regions;
(b) a module for planners and administrators, to be combined with an abridged version of module (a);
(c) a series of discipline-specific modules, intended as a basis for scientific/technical in-service courses in combination with module (a) and also for incorporation into the regular courses of graduate and postgraduate programmes in agriculture, forestry and related disciplines.

9. Postgraduate research projects in agro-forestry form part of large interdisciplinary programmes conducted and/or guided by teams of scientists.

10. Governments take steps to familiarize primary and secondary school children with the role of multipurpose trees in rural development.

11. ICRAF:

(a) Play a coordinating role in the preparation and continuing improvement of teaching packages consisting of course outlines, lecture notes, lists of reference, additional reading material and audio-visual aids, for inservice courses, agro-forestry course units and agro-forestry related elements in the relevant agricultural and forestry, subjects;
(b) Lend support to those institutions of higher education that wish to initiate an agroforestry option in their undergraduate programme (agriculture or forestry );
(c) Participate actively in the establishment of a network of regional centres for postgraduate training and research as well as in-service courses in agro-forestry using existing institutions of higher agricultural and forestry education;
(d) Compile handbooks on multipurpose tree species potentially useful for agro-forestry systems, containing information on ecological requirements, distribution, possible uses and seed sources;
(e) Coordinate the writing and publication of textbooks on agro-forestry at higher technical and university level;
(f) Prepare, distribute and periodically update a directory of scientists with training and/or experience in agro-forestry;
(g) Request at regular intervals from all agricultural and forestry schools, colleges and faculties, information on agro-forestry courses and programmes;
(h) Explore the desirability of an agro-forestry journal and, if considered desirable, assume a coordinating and editorial role;
(i) Examine the feasibility of restructuring the undergraduate programme on the basis of a systems approach and incorporating agro-forestry elements, and, if feasible, prepare the curricula and syllabuses for such a programme.


Contant, R.B. 1979. "Training and Education in Agro-forestry." In T Chandler and D. Spurgeon, eds., International Co-operation in Agro-forestry. pp. 190-218. Proceedings of an International Conference, DSEIICRAF. Nairobi.

Huxley, P.A. 1976a. Agricultural Re-education." Span, 19: 80.
- 1976b. Addendum to "Agricultural Re-education." in C.L. Keswani et al., eds., Proceedings of Workshop on Agricultural Curricula for Undergraduate Students. pp. 335-345. Faculty of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Science, University of Dar-es-Salaam. Morogoro, Tanzania.
- 1979. "Agro-forestry at Degree Level: A New Programme Structure." In T. Chandler and D. Spurgeon, eds., International Co-operation in Agro-forestry. pp. 219-227. Proceedings of an International Conference; DSEACRAF. Nairobi.

Roche, L., and R. Cooper. 1980. "Forestry for Local Community Development: Manpower, Training and Education Requirements. Commonwealth Forestry Review, 59: 163-179.


Education in agro-forestry could be considered at a number of levels - training higher-level staff, and training field workers {especially extension workers) and, through them, the farmers themselves. One of the most important duties of the higher staff would be to train extension workers.

A large and growing number of institutions claimed to be giving courses in agro-forestry, and this was also covered to some extent in courses labelled, for instance, "Applied Ecology." Agro-forestry was a fashionable subject, and there were dangers that some institutions would initiate courses without adequate facilities being available. Maintenance of standards was important. Strengthening of existing institutions was probably more important than the creation of new ones.

There were difficulties in selection and recruitment of both lecturers and students. Very few people were available with qualifications in agro-forestry, and it would be necessary to begin by employing as lecturers people who had been trained in other disciplines. The important thing was that they should be prepared to co-operate with others within a multidisciplinary framework. As for students, one suggestion was that training might begin at the M.Sc. level, but the view was also expressed that high academic achievement alone was not the best criterion for selection of workers whose duties would be mainly working with farmers in rural areas.

Courses in agro-forestry should be co-ordinated with related subjects such as community forestry and rural energy programmes. As the success of agro-forestry was largely dependent on relationships with people, studies should have a high emphasis on social relationships. The emphasis of Dr. Huxley on field work was generally welcomed, though one participant pointed out that this could be more expensive than classroom work.

Apart from specialists in agro-forestry, all those concerned with land-resource development should have some knowledge of the subject and courses for such people were also an important part of agro-forestry education. Another important function of agroforestry institutions was the provision of library and documentation services.

With regard to extension workers and training of farmers, it was suggested that, rather than attempting to set up a new cadre of agro-forestry extension workers, with the confusion this could cause in the minds of the farmers, existing agriculture or forestry extension workers could be trained in the techniques of agroforestry. Such workers must be in close contact with the farmers, both men and women, and be prepared to accept feedback from them. They should tell the people what was possible, relying on them to say what their needs were.

Extension workers, however, could not be left on their own. Higher officials also should go among the farmers and discuss their problems with them, to ensure that the programme was adhering to the principles and lines of approach laid down.

Pilot or model farmers could play an important part in spreading knowledge to their neighbours, and many field trials should be made on farmers' own farms demonstration was always more convincing than propaganda.

Provision of training material in agro-forestry could form an important part of adult literacy programmes. There was a general need for such material, which could best, however, be prepared on the spot by the extension services.