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Assessment of governance principles application in forest protected areas: the case of six state forests in western Zimbabwe/Evaluation des applications des principes de gestion dans les zones protegees de foret: cas de six forets d'etat dans l'ouest du Zimbabwe/Evaluacion de la aplicacion de principios de gobernanza en areas forestales protegidas: el caso de seis bosques estatales en en el oeste de Zimbabue.

INTRODUCTION

A protected area is a: ... clearly defined geographical space, recognised, dedicated and managed, through legal or other effective means, to achieve the long-term conservation of nature with associated ecosystem services and cultural values" (Borrini-Feyeraband et al. 2013). Zimbabwe's gazetted indigenous forests constitute protected areas because they are spatially defined forested lands with demarcated borders and legally recognized through the Forest Act Chapter 19:05. They are owned, controlled and managed by the state through the Forestry Commission (FC) to achieve the long-term in-situ protection, maintenance, sustainable utilization and enhancement of biodiversity for the perpetual provision of ecosystem goods, services and a wide range of socio-economic benefits. Forest protected areas (FPAs) constitute one of the tried and tested in-situ conservation strategies for forest and other terrestrial biodiversity (Woodley et al. 2012, Macura 2016). These FPAs have been criticized for belonging to a vision rooted in the past and championing the exclusivist approach that distrusts local communities and ignores traditional institutions and approaches. Governance arrangements and quality that steer in-situ conservation strategies are crucial for effective management and improvement of conservation outcomes (Macura et al. 2015). These forest governance arrangements constitute a subject that can be investigated and appropriately treated on the basis of a thorough understanding of local and national history.

Zimbabwe's protected forests are facing increasing pressures from both natural and anthropogenic causes that present significant management challenges (Turner et al. 2014). The problems of deforestation, forest degradation, poaching and encroachment among others bedeviling these forests have their roots in the various governance arrangements that have prevailed for more than a century spanning over the pre-colonial, colonial and post-colonial periods. These challenges necessitate the establishment of governance arrangements that are context specific and 'good' for the forests' effective and equitable conservation (Borrini-Feyeraband et al. 2013). The existing problem is how the protected forests can be governed to meet the diverse goals of the local communities, national and global stakeholders, e.g. subsistence resources for local users, timber and ecotourism for the state, and biodiversity and carbon sequestration for global users? (Vogt et al. 2006).

Forest governance constitutes the norms, processes, instruments, people and organizations that control how people interact with forests and their resources (Kishor and Rosenbaum 2012) to sustain and improve their economic productivity, environmental values and the welfare and quality of life for those whose livelihoods depend on the sector (Contreras-Hermosilla 2011). This relates to how access, rights over, and benefits from forests are allocated and secured, including the planning, monitoring and control of their use, management, and conservation (FAO 2012). Forest governance has gone through significant metamorphosis over the years from centralized systems where the government was steering to new adaptive governance in which several actors are co-steering that is spreading in developing countries across the world. Of late, there has also been a very strong emphasis towards the adoption and application of good governance principles in the forest sector to achieve 'triple-win' outcomes of forest conservation, national development and local communities' livelihoods sustenance (Cavanagh 2015).

Good forest governance means that decisions that are made are 'fair, transparent and just, rights are respected, laws and rules are enforced equitably, decision-makers are accountable and decisions are made based on the analysis of what is good for the people and forests (Larson and Petkova 2011). Important principles that need to be applied for 'good forest governance' to be achieved include inclusiveness, transparency, accountability, legitimacy, public participation, fair and clear tenure rights, coherent legislation and its enforcement, inter-sectoral linkages, efficiency, equity and incentives, well capacitated institutions, environmental sustainability, clear mandates of and arrangements between different stakeholders (Dietz et al. 2003, Ortolano 2009, PROFOR 2011, Secco et al. 2013, Sheng 2010, FAO 2012, Phelps et al. 2010 and World Bank 2009). These provide a 'conceptual yardstick' against which to evaluate the quality of governance (Kooiman et al. 2005). Of crucial importance to these principles in the context of forest governance is the link between conservation, human rights and the fight against poverty. While the principles are meant to be universally applicable since they are based on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, different stakeholders may interpret them differently depending on their background and interests leading to different designs and operationalization of governance arrangements at the forest level.

There is however no clear evidence in most of the existing literature on the role of governance arrangements and the cause-effect relationship between decision-making style and conservation outcomes of forest protected areas (Macura 2016). Knowledge on the application of governance principles at forest level and its influence on protected forest conservation outcomes is also lacking (Macura et al. 2015). Therefore, much is still to be learnt about the governance arrangements that can meet desirable forest conservation goals whilst enhancing forest dependent communities' livelihoods and the institutional arrangements that can foster cooperation amongst forest stakeholders and solve forest related conflicts. Consensus is building that application of good governance principles in the forest sector is the cornerstone for improving forest condition, resolve conflicts and sustain livelihoods (B2015 Governance Drafting Committee 2013). However, there is no one-size-fits-all governance approach since forests are complex socio-ecological systems that exhibit various degrees of uniqueness. Each situation needs to be investigated so that each forest's governance mechanism is designed and operationalised with respect to its specific historical, locational, priorities and opportunities context.

Forest governance outcomes on the other hand include forest condition, carbon storage and livelihoods (Chhatre and Agrawal 2009). Taking into cognizance the fact that governance quality results in multiple conservation outcomes, this study narrowed its focus to forest condition. Forest condition describes the generalized state of a forest with regard to its 'sustainability, productivity, aesthetics, contamination, utilization, diversity and extent' (Ritters et al. 1992). In several cases, it is used to describe forest health. There are multiple indicators of forest condition that include but not limited to forest cover, stocking (volume, biomass, density) and even status of forest structure (size/age distribution, patch-fragmentation and ground debris). Studies that focus on forest condition do not agree on ideal indicators that should be examined, how they should be examined and the temporal/ spatial frequency and intensity at which the examination should be done (Tucker et al. 2008). The choice of indicators is therefore determined by the particular study research questions. In this study, the International Forestry Resources and Institutions (IFRI) (2008)'s qualitative expert assessment of vegetation density and diversity was used. These variables were identified as reliable measures of forest condition (Randolph et al. 2005).

Most studies on protected forests in Zimbabwe have focused on stakeholder conflicts, resources access conditions and benefits sharing issues leaving out the broader governance issues that have implications on the collective of protected forests challenges--conflicts, livelihoods, conservation and environmental services provision (Mandondo 2000, Chigwenya and Manatsa 2007, Chigwenya 2008). Limited attention has been given to issues of Zimbabwe's protected forest decision-making, policy implementation and governance arrangements over the years and how these have impacted forest condition. Despite the fact that governance history in the indigenous forest sector may be difficult to trace, characterize and explain, examining its intended and unintended impacts on conservation is an important step towards evidence-based protected area management (Ferraro and Pressey 2015). It also provides important insights and lessons that can help shape current and future governance practices, forest policy and management approaches.

This study assessed the historical application of seven governance principles relevant across a wide range of circumstances and different forest and other natural resources governance arrangements (Graham et al. 2003). The principles are transparency, accountability, participation, fairness and rights, rule enforcement, legitimacy and voice and capacity of governing authorities to effectively carryout their mandate. These principles are similar to those recommended and applied in governance assessment studies by Graham et al. 2003, Lockwood 2010), Lockwood et al. 2010, Turner et al. 2014. Governance history was divided into six significant periods: 1) the pre-colonial era up to the appointment of the first colonial forest officer in 1920; 2) the colonial period before the liberation struggle intensified in 1975; 3) the liberation war period until independence in 1980; 4) the early years of independence until the adoption of the Economic Structural Adjustment Programme (ESAP) in 1990; 5) the ESAP era till the start of the Fast Track Land Reform Programme in year 2000, and 6) the Fast Track Land Reform Period from 2000 to 2005. The study showed the extent to which the principles were adopted and applied under each set of governance arrangements at a specific historical period and their consequential impacts on forest condition. It has been argued that information on the application of governance principles in the past can better inform contemporary governance arrangements and influence future governance of protected forests. This can help managers to better understand the evolving dynamics of the system that they battle to manage (Steen-Adams et al. 2015). It also forms an important foundation for measuring prevailing governance arrangements that may be aimed at reforming governance to foster sustainable forest management.

RESEARCH MATERIALS AND METHODS

Study Area location and biophysical characteristics

The study was meant to collect data that would enable the understanding of the application of governance principles in diverse protected indigenous forests in western Zimbabwe. Six forests located in Matabeleland north province (Figure 1) were selected to represent diverse governance arrangements and forest condition. Basing on the literature reviewed and consultation with forest management authorities in the province, the study forests were selected and categorized by shared characteristics into two groups of three forests each: the Gwaai, Mbembesi and Gwampa group and the Fuller, Kazuma and Pandamasuie group (Figure 1). The main criterion for categorisation of the forests was the presence or absence of peasant population settled in the forests. The Gwaai, Mbembesi and Gwampa group has in situ forest inhabitants (unacceptable situation) whilst Kazuma, Pandamasuie and Fuller have ex situ inhabitants (acceptable situation under the Forest Act chapter 19:05).

Gwaai, Mbembesi and Gwampa group of forests

These forests despite their proximity to each other are each located in its own district but close to Lupane centre, the provincial capital of Matabeleland north (Figure 1 and Table 1). Each of these three forests' designation involved the eviction of indigenous forest inhabitants who resided in each forest area at the time. Their history since then has been characterised by tenurial and other conflicts between forest management authorities and the local inhabitants (Mapedza and Mandondo 2002). Presently, the forests have in situ inhabitants that are mainly confined to road networks and river valleys. Their main sources of livelihood are crop cultivation, remittances from towns, livestock rearing and exploitation of forest resources. The poor quality of soil and abundance of land results in some of the inhabitants practising shifting cultivation. Of the three forests, Gwaai is the largest of the demarcated forests in Zimbabwe and was one of the first to be identified for protection in 1923 leading to its subsequent gazettement in 1930. The forests are surrounded by Tsholotsho, Nkayi, Lupane, Gwaai and Shangani communal lands. The surrounding communities significantly depend on the forests for wood, livestock grazing, bushmeat and collection of various types of non-timber forest products to supplement the little livelihood resources they get from their degraded localities. Other forms of settlements around this group of forests include Bembesi resettlement area and the Gwaai African purchase farms.

These forests are in agro-ecological region IV that receives annual rainfall ranging from 400-700 mm. Rainfall is temporally poorly distributed and seasonal droughts are common. It has become more variable in recent years with climate change and new trends are yet to be established. The forests are on generally flat to undulating terrain that is predominantly underlain by deep unconsolidated Kalahari sand deposits with small patches of hydromorphic black clay mainly in the vlei areas. All the forest lands have distinct vegetation zones that are related to soil and topography. Vleis are characterised by different formations of grasses that are good habitats for grazers. The Kalahari sand zones are the most extensive and they support commercially valuable Baikiaea plurijuga woodlands associated with Pterocarpus angolensis, Recinodendron rautanenii, Burkea Africana, Brachystegia spiciformis, Julbernadia globiflora, Terminalia sereca, Guibourtia coleosperma, Combretum species and Diplorynchus condylocarpon. The colophosperum mopane woodlands occur mainly on vlei margins.

Fuller, Kazuma and Pandamasuie group of forests

This group of forests lies in Hwange district at the extreme western part of Zimbabwe close to the resort town of Victoria Falls (Figure 1). They have ex situ inhabitants. Fuller shares its boundary along the Bulawayo-Victoria Falls highway with Jambezi communal area where subsistence farming is practised. Up until 1961, it was felt that Fuller forest was not worth protecting since surveys had indicated that it had little timber of commercial value. A major infrastructure development in this forest is the Victoria Falls Airport that falls in Ursula forest management block. It has been recently expanded taking up a significant portion of the forest area.

Like Kazuma, Pandamasuie is part of the land previously occupied by Pioneer colonial settlers that had displaced indigenous inhabitants by forcing them to relocate to Botswana and to the Victoria Falls area. Kazuma forest's western boundary is the international boundary between Zimbabwe and Botwsana. To its northern side is Kazuma national park and to the south is Matetsi safari area. The Jambezi communal land inhabitants collect low value forest resources for subsistence purposes from both Kazuma and Fuller forests under the permit and licence arrangements with the Forestry Commission authorities. Pandamasuie forest is basically a wildlife habitat where photographic and consumptive hunting safaris operate.

Data collection and analysis

This paper is based on the synthesis of data from the following sources: archival research of grey literature from Forestry commission records, policy framework reports and management plans that were available at the study forests' administration offices and Chesa Forest Research Station in the city of Bulawayo; contemporary studies (journals, books, book chapters, internet websites and other documents) about environmental and forest governance in general and Zimbabwe's indigenous forest sector in particular and key informant interviews.

There is a serious dearth of data on Zimbabwe's indigenous forests and their rate of change for rational conservation decision making (Temu 1993). The study therefore resorted to key informant interviews that provided mainly perception-based measures of governance quality and forest condition. Cook et al. (2014) measured the accuracy of protected area officials' knowledge of vegetation condition within protected areas relative to an empirical vegetation measurement tool and found that most officials' assessments matched the empirical condition measurements. They also found no relationship between the accuracy of officials' vegetation condition knowledge and their level of experience, education or their gender. Information derived from personal judgements was therefore adjudged to be relevant and reliable and therefore a cost effective substitute for empirical data for this study. The forestry officials that were interviewed were Matabele-land North Forestry Provincial Officers, district conservators and foresters as well as retired former forestry officials. These are or were once responsible for addressing a wide range of governance issues and are most familiar with on-ground conditions (Cook et al. 2014). For the Gwaai, Bembesi and Gwampa group of forests, personal interviews were conducted with 3 Forestry Commission officials from each forest (district conservator, forester and a member of the forest protection unit). Fuller, Kazuma and Pandamasuie group is found in one district and therefore has one district conservator. This led to personal interviews with one conservator for the 3 forests and 2 other officials from each forest (forester and Forest Protection Unit member). At the provincial level 2 officials (The indigenous resources ecologist and chief conservator) were interviewed. Therefore a total of 18 forestry officials participated in the survey.

From the forests' local communities, purposively selected key informants included the local traditional and political authorities such as chiefs and councilors as well as elderly local residents. From Jambezi, Mvutu, Shangani, Bembesi, and Nkayi communal areas, 2 leaders (Chief and Councilor) and 2 elderly local residents (one male and one female) who had grown up in each community and were considered local experts in their villages were interviewed since we were interested in the long term perspective of governance principles application and forest condition changes. Chalmers and Fabricius (2007) established that in some African traditional societies, local ecological knowledge is unevenly spread and held by individuals rather than groups and therefore this study found it important to interview experts rather than randomly selected community members. The elderly members interviewed came from villages bordering study forest reserves and forest residents (for Gwaai, Bembesi and Gwampa forests with in-situ inhabitants) that rely heavily on forest resources for their subsistence requirements. The interviews with local community members determined local communities' involvement or lack of it in forest governance activities that indicated the principles that were being applied by state officials and the availability of subsistence forest resources to determine forest condition. The selected respondents allowed for in-depth discussions drawing from their knowledge and experiences in the forest sector. The multiple data sources enabled a comprehensive review of the evolution of forest governance arrangements and forest condition outcomes.

On forest condition, the forest officials (foresters, conservators and ecologists) and representatives of forest users (Local leaders and elderly 'experts') were asked to assess the status of forest condition using density of vegetation and species diversity as indicators on a four-point Likert scale (International Forest Resources and Institutions, 2008) (4-not at all degraded, 3-moderately degraded, 2-very degraded, 1-extremely degraded (Brown 2010) (Table 3). On the same scale, local leaders were asked to indicate the subsistence value of the forest by assessing the availability of non-timber forest products.

In addition to data collected through key informant interviews, forest condition data per specific historical period was also determined using archival forest officers' inventory reports, management plans and peer-reviewed articles that reported empirical data (information collected through a structured method that is reported in the study--Lund et al. 2010) on forest management and conservation impacts based on field vegetation measurements and assessments by forest managers and users. Therefore, data collected was validated through asking multiple individuals and using results of inventories carried out by foresters at specific historical periods as well as published empirical data.

Qualitative data collected through scholarly works, key informant interviews and archival document searches were in form of transcripts of interviews and discussions, written texts from published literature and Forestry Commission reports. These were analyzed using mainly discourse thematic analysis methods and procedures according to the analytic plan that was developed in line with the research design. Taking into cognizance that discourses reside in open social systems (Hopf 2004), the wide context in which various discourses occurred were considered during their analyses. The specific procedures followed included firstly going through the data sets to gain an overview of the data coverage. Then data were sorted according to the seven governance principles under study so that materials that belonged to the same principle were grouped together. This enabled the researchers to make judgements about the performance of the governing institutions for each principle per specific historical period. To make a summative judgement of the extent of application of each principle, combined qualitative and quantitative scales were used (Table 3): 'very low (1)', 'low (2)', 'moderate (3)', 'high (4)', 'very high (5)'. For each principle, the quantitative scores were aggregated to determine the desirability of the governance quality per each historical period. The governance quality desirability scores ranged from a minimum of 7 (if the application of each of the seven principles was 'very low (1)' at the forest level at a particular historical period) to 35 (if the application of each of the seven principles was 'very high (5)' at the forest level at a specific historical period) (Table 3).

RESULTS

Forest governance principles application at different historical periods and the resultant governance quality desirability

The relative application of the 7 forest governance principles in each of the six study forests at different time periods is shown in Tables 4 and 5. The principles were applied almost in the same manner throughout the study forests. There were minor intra and inter forest group variations in governance principles application. The published literature reviewed and archival records consulted show that all the 7 governance principles were highly applied in governing all the study forests during the pre-colonial period resulting in desirable governance quality with a score of 28 out of 35 for all the forests. The application of the governance principles however deteriorated drastically with the inception of colonialism. All other principles were very lowly applied during the colonial period except rule enforcement and the capacity of FC to carry out its mandate that averaged high (4 out of 5) and moderate (3 out of 5) respectively. The FC had all the powers to make all decisions about the forests and their resources without consulting stakeholders. The local community's rights to forest resources were however at times enjoyed through pilfering and theft of prohibited forest resources e.g. grazing in Gwaai forest was at times accessed through cutting of fences to let cattle graze in the forest.

The liberation war which was waged mainly in the 1970s saw a slight improvement in the application of the fairness and rights principle as people could access various forest resources without hindrances including settling and cultivating crops on forest land. Rule enforcement and the capacity of FC to effectively manage the forests deteriorated drastically as FC personnel moved to urban areas for security reasons. The local communities' voice with regards to forest resources also slightly improved since most forest officers had left their offices as a result of security concerns. Despite the improvement in fairness and rights principles, the governance of the time remained undesirable for all study forests with the governance quality score ranging between 10-11 out of 35. The achievement of independence in 1980 saw the application of most principles across the 6 forests improving from very low to moderate resulting in the governance quality of the time being moderately desirable (with average scores varying between 14-18) for all the forests. However, fairness and respect for local people's rights particularly those resident in the forests were not observed as the FC with the assistance of security agencies embarked on an exercise to evict forest residents and in some cases violently through destruction of homes particularly in Gwaai, Bembesi and Gwampa forests. A similar exercise was carried out in Fuller forest though it was not as violent as in the other three forests. Fuller forest was therefore cleared of its in-situ inhabitants during this period and has remained uninhabited to date.

The introduction of ESAP in the 1990s resulted in reduction of funding of government departments including FC which significantly reduced its capacity to effectively manage the forests. However, the same period saw the introduction of pilot co-management activities in Gwaai, Gwampa and Bembesi group leading to the moderate application of transparency, accountability and participation in these 3 forests. During the same period, interviewed elderly 'experts' attributed the high incidence and increased forest damage by forest fires to inexperienced and young FC managers who had no capacity to fight forest fires. They further argued that this was worsened by their failure to involve forest residence and other locals who had vast knowledge about the behaviour of forest fires which was acquired over generations and therefore had become part of their way of life as forest people. A sharp contrast in the application of the forest governance principles between the two groups of forests occurred from the year 2000 onwards with the implementation of the Fast Track Land Reform Programme (FTLRP). For the Gwaai, Gwampa and Bembesi group that is close to densely populated and impoverished communal areas, lawlessness that characterised the land reform program led to collapse of law enforcement and capacity of FC to manage the forests as forests were invaded by the land hungry people for settlement and agriculture. Participation, fairness and rights principles dominated as local communities reclaimed the forests where their ancestors had been evicted from during the colonial period.

After realising that the forest invaders were there to stay in the inhabited forests, foresters started holding meetings particularly with forest residence explaining provisions of the Forest Act, the importance of conserving forest resources among other issues. FC also started to involve other stakeholders such as Environmental Management Agency (EMA), Rural District Councils (RDCs) and other key stakeholders in the resolution of forest conflicts. On the other hand, Fuller, Kazuma and Pandamasuie group had most governance principles lowly to moderately applied since the same arrangements that prevailed during the early years of independence of accessing low value forest resources under the permit system continued to prevail. Fuller and Kazuma forests had the permit system actually scaled up to include not only women, but men as well in subsistence resources collection. However, FC capacity and rule enforcement remained lowly applied. Governance principles application varied more with historical period rather than between forest groups and within a group of forests. The Gwaai, Bembesi and Gwampa's governance quality was therefore undesirable whilst the Fuller, Kazuma and Pandamasuie group had moderately desirable governance during the FTLRP period until 2005.

Governance quality desirability

Governance quality desirability in the study forests as shown in Fig. 2 has been fluctuating over the years. The most desirable governance took place during the pre-colonial times when the governance score was 28 out of 35 for all the study forests. The quality of governance plummeted from extremely desirable to undesirable immediately after the introduction of the first colonial forester in 1920 and the subsequent creation of restrictive and discriminatory land and natural resources policy and legislation. The strongest echoes of the undesirability of the colonial period forest governance came from the local elders who remembered vividly the bad ways in which they were treated by colonial foresters then and the extent to which the forests became inaccessible for the extraction of basic livelihood resources including NTFPs even for the forest resident communities. The deterioration of governance quality reached its climax during the liberation war period in the late 1970s with Fuller forest having the lowest score of 10.

Governance quality improved with the achievement of independence in the 1980s to moderate desirability level with all the scores above 15. This trend continued into the ESAP era (1990s) for most forests except for Kazuma which had a governance desirability score of 14. All forests governance arrangements deteriorated with implementation of the FTLRP from the year 2000 onwards. Bembesi experienced the worst fall from a score of 19 to 11. Generally, the periods with worst governance quality were the colonial period and the FTLP whilst the pre-colonial period had the highest quality of governance.

Forest condition

Fig. 3 shows that forest condition rose and fell in tandem with fluctuations in governance quality desirability. Archival reports and peer reviewed literature reported that forests were not degraded during the pre-colonial period. This was confirmed by Kelly Edwards (1938)'s report that the volume of commercial timber in well stocked areas of Gwaai-Bembesi forests averaged fifteen mature trees per acre in the pre-colonial era. This fell by about 80% to an average of four exploitable trees per acre in the mid-1930s. All forests' condition fell continuously until it reached a score of 2 (very degraded) during the liberation war era. Kazuma forest is the one that remained moderately degraded (score 3) during the entirety of the colonial era and after. With the improvement in the application of the governance principles and the resultant improvement in governance quality at independence in 1980 and thereafter, all forests' condition improved in tandem with these changes until the year 2000 when the government commenced the implementation of FTLRP. Fig. 3 shows that the inhabited forest group of Gwaai, Bembesi and Gwampa was most affected by human agency that characterized the FTLRP leading to excessive clearance for settlement and agriculture. One of the district conservators stated that 'people believe in airport creation' where deforestation is the first in a chain of environmental problems caused by influx of settlers in the forests. Gwampa forest became extremely degraded since it was the one most affected by the influx of land hungry local inhabitants.

Generally, the post year 2000 economic environment characterized by high rate of inflation, shortage of foreign currency, exodus of professionals, the FTLRP, political disturbances and lack of donor support compromised FC's capacity to carry out its forest stewardship roles of fire protection, biodiversity protection, supervision of timber harvesting and conducting anti-poaching patrols (Tsiko 2010) leading to excessive forest degradation. Settlement and cultivation by forest inhabitants are regarded by FC as the greatest threats to forest condition because their impacts are very visible whilst impacts of commercial timber poachers are clandestine and therefore difficult to determine. Foresters stated that without recapitalization of FC and engagement and active involvement of local communities in the governance of the forests protected areas, the country's hardwoods will be depleted within the next 10 to 15 years. The Fuller, Kazuma and Pandamasuie group was not affected by forest invasion associated with the FTLRP and their level of degradation remained moderate with the exception of Fuller which was reported to be very degraded. The trend shows a continuous deterioration in forest condition over the years from the pre-colonial times until 2005.

DISCUSSION

Traditional forest governance approaches of pre-colonial times: Shall we return to these basics?

Results have shown that people in Zimbabwe, like elsewhere in Africa and other developing regions appreciated the value of forests because they relied heavily on them for their livelihoods sustenance and development (McCullum 2000). Interviewed local elderly 'experts' pointed out that forests were major sources of a diverse range of services and goods including grazing, poles for construction, firewood, thatch grass, traditional medicines, honey, wild fruits, edible caterpillars and mushrooms among others. This led the pre-colonial communities to put in place the oldest form of elaborate forest governance systems that prevailed during pre-colonial times (Fabricius 2004). The traditional systems were enshrined in Indigenous Knowledge Systems (IKS) and included rules of access and use, customs and procedures that created small-scale disturbances, taboos where certain resources were prohibited from being used at certain times of the month or year, situations where certain plants and animals were out of bounce for certain families and clans as well as designation of sacred areas and forests where resource extraction was strictly controlled (Barrow 1996).

The traditional institutions such as kings, chiefs, headmen and healers created rules and regulations governing ownership and access to forests enforced by the chief and ruling lineages (Piearce and Gumbo 1993). The institutions earned their legitimacy through acceptance by their subjects. The control instruments and mechanisms that were applied were based on shared norms, values and regulations that were based on community-specific customary laws (Counsell 2009). The interviewed local elders in and around both forest groups confirmed that forest resources were accessed under specific rules and regulations that were passed from parents to children. Chiefs and headmen had mechanisms in place of monitoring and enforcing the rules and regulations through fines in form of livestock or other household assets and at most through exclusion from the chief's area of jurisdiction. Transparency was maximized by the clarity through which reasoning behind decisions was communicated to all members of the community (Lockwood 2010). Everyone, young and old was made aware of the dos and don'ts with regards to forests and their resources. Members of the community actively participated in rule enforcement and monitoring of transgressors. Those who contravened the rules were punished by the traditional leaders or by the supernatural through various types of misfortunes. People's rights to resources were respected and special requests were accepted. Governance of the forests and their resources was done in the interest of the entire community where all community members had equal access to collect the multiple forest products on which indigenous material culture was based. There was a symbiotic relationship between the forests and people in that people obtained various livelihood forest products whilst activities such as livestock grazing reduced fire hazards by reducing forest fuel load (inflammable biomass). There were no meaningful variations in traditional governance processes and mechanisms between the communities surrounding the two groups of forests studied. The application of a wide range of governance principles in a direct and indirect way made the governance quality very desirable and resultantly maintained the forest in an undegraded state.

Kwashirai (2008) and Maravanyika (2012), argue that traditional governance systems were generally based on social justice, fairness and participation, making them effective means to ensure stewardship of forest resources and livelihood sustenance. It should be borne in mind however that traditional governance systems were possible and forest condition remained stable then because human population densities were low, people's impact on the land was minimal due to their nomadic nature and simple lifestyles (Fabricius 2004). Where the practices still exist such as in some Sri Lankan coastal fishing villages and Indian Panchayats forests, they have been maintained by the isolation of the villages that has kept them 'closed' to external influences. Similar practices in Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand became dysfunctional because the communities were open to other occupations and trade opportunities with the outside world (Baland and Platteau 1996).

In Zimbabwe, like in other southern African states, the traditional forest governance systems collapsed due to colonial-era social engineering and forest condition suffered (Rhodes University et al. 2001). This is in line with Dietz et al. (2003)'s observation that locally evolved institutional arrangements governed by stable communities and buffered from outside forces have sustained resources successfully for long periods of time, but they often fail when external forces interfere with them or when rapid change occurs. It is evidently the case that good governance systems that prevailed during the pre-colonial era have been effective in conserving forest resources. According to Mawere (2013), the colonial and post-independent Zimbabwe's conservation measures have been failing because the state tended to 'favour and privilege western scientific models at the expense of the indigenous conservation practices of local people'. He supports his argument by sighting the success story of the Norumedzo jiri (forest) in south-eastern Zimbabwe where blending of expert scientific based conservation methods and indigenous epistemologies enforced by traditional leaders have had positive conservation outcomes. The major question is: Can we reinvigorate the traditional governance systems that existed in the past and can they be as effective as they used to be? Whilst attempts to reinvigorate the traditional systems have considerable appeal particularly to donor-funded programmes given the ready legitimacy of traditional authority, its potentially powerful sanctions and the challenges associated with arbitration between competing claims to resources (Brown 1999), many authorities have acknowledged the difficulties of reverting to these systems under contemporary conditions.

Baland and Platteau (1996) argued that traditional systems' effectiveness would be guaranteed in a static environment, that is, where peace reigns, population is stationary (or is controlled to match the resources), no technical change, economic activities are not affected by radically new trade programmes among others. The situation in Zimbabwe and other southern African countries' forests today presents significant challenges as the conditions highlighted by Baland and Platteau no longer exist formerly. Challenges in the contemporary world that make it difficult for traditional systems to apply good governance principles are diverse and varied. Central government's intervention in environmental matters and other aspects of social organization through establishment of institutions such as Environmental, Village and Ward Development Committees as well as Councilors with different and sometimes conflicting powers and mandates make it difficult for traditional authority to flex its muscles and assert its authority over forest resources. Government programmes such as the FTLRP led to Gwampa, Gwaai and Bembesi forest areas becoming melting pots where people of different cultures and traditions came together and settled in the same geographical area. This created tensions associated with leadership wrangles, different traditional and cultural beliefs making the much needed cooperation difficult. In the past, people in the same community would share common cultural beliefs that would make them easily work together.

Globalisation has led to rapid spread of technology, market integration and transformation of value and belief systems (Brown 1999, Baland and Platteau 1996). Market integration has exposed local communities to the wider world through the sale of outputs, buying of inputs, labour exchanges and financial transactions (Baland and Platteau 1996). These have been promoted by recent massive growth in communication technologies leading to weakening of traditional beliefs and taboos which were important components of the traditional forest governance systems. In India, traditional mechanisms of forest resources allocation and access broke down due to commercial penetration of the hill economy of Panchayat forests of Uttar Pradesh in the work of state forestry (Guha 1985 in Baland and Platteau 1996). Technological change in one hand may allow more intensive exploitation of forest resources whilst on the other it may be beneficial by improving the monitoring of resource users. Its overall impact has been found to be however negative. In all the six case study forests in western Zimbabwe, foresters and Forest Protection Unit (FPU) members concurred that poachers and illegal loggers use cell phones to warn each other of the movements and location of forest monitors and therefore their operations have become more sophisticated, difficult to monitor and apprehend.

Demographic changes have also increased pressure on forest resources to the extent that subtle traditional rules cannot provide effective regulation. Young generations' interests in local community affairs and in traditional resource management systems in particular seem to be gradually fading especially when they get alternative income sources or when they get employed in distant places. Matsa and Matsa (2011) found out that migrant labour from Matabeleland region where study forests are located to South Africa losses interest on its return to participate in discussions of local problems and therefore are unlikely to be interested in forest monitoring and traditional rule enforcement. Climate change adds another layer to challenges of traditional resources governance systems. It is resulting in resource deterioration even if they are not exploited. Its negative effect on food security has made forest resources important safety nets for communities on forest margins. Additionally, not all traditional leaders have claims to traditional legitimacy. In Zimbabwe, the institution has been politicized and some leaders are imposed on their positions by politicians for political gain. Many therefore view the restoration of the traditional institution through the Traditional Leaders Act as a political attempt to create an authority for purposes disconnected to the local interests and natural resources governance (Brown 1999).

While there are arguments in favour of reinvigorating traditional governance systems that existed in the past, we are skeptical that the changing circumstances create new challenges for the systems to be as effective in contemporary times and beyond. Ostrom (1999)'s work on self-governance and forest resources also shows that traditional governance regimes are not likely to work under conditions of contested boundaries, unclearly defined users, authority whose legitimacy is questionable and where rights of participation are unequal. However, although the systems may not be replicable in today's world, they had components that may need to be incorporated in modern day forest governance systems.

The colonial era forest governance approach: What lessons can we learn?

The inception of colonialism in 1890 brought about a sudden deterioration in the quality of forest governance in the six study forests. Colonialism led to the subjugation of traditional forest governance institutions without immediately replacing them with any system of governance until the late 1920s. This created a gap where forest exploitation was unregulated. The colonial authorities' timber millers recklessly exploited forest resources leading to unprecedented forest condition deterioration. Lack of law enforcement led to timber volumes dropping by about 80% from fifteen mature trees per acre to four exploitable trees in the Gwaai, Bembesi and Gwampa group in the mid-1930s (Kelly-Edward 1938). The tendency in the logging operations was to exploit the best trees for high quality timber leading to genetic impoverishment and risk of extinction of commercially valuable species (Mapping and Inventory Unit 1998). The depletion of forest protected area resources was a result of two main factors: the breakdown of traditional governance with its associated rules and regulations and the commercial harvesting of timber which gave rise to unregulated and illegal activities by both concessionaires and local communities (Campbell et al. 2001).

The first colonial forest policy was adopted in 1929 that led to the establishment of forest reserves, provision of funds for protection and for the supervision of timber harvesting. Traditional rules were replaced by statutory forestry laws in form of the Native Reserves Forest Produce Act (Chapter 115) and the Forest Herbage Preservations Act. The local communities were not consulted during law formulation and they did not participate in the implementation. Employed armed guards were established to patrol and protect the forests. The vastness of the forests however made the few guards ineffective. Local communities could hardly access even basic resources for subsistence as forests were reserved for commercial timber exploitation under license by big companies such as the British South Africa Company (BSAC), Rhodesia Native Timber Concessionaires (RNTC) and the Matebele Timber Trust (MTT). Later, the local communities were to be physically excluded from the forests through evictions to the 'native reserves' of Gwaai and Shangani where they could clandestinely access both timber and NTFP resources through poaching (Kwashirai 2008 and Mudekwe 1996.

Most if not all governance principles were flouted by the colonial authorities. The policies and laws that were promulgated were unfair and discriminatory. Traditional institutions that had sustainably used forests over the years were replaced by institutions modelled along western lines such as the Forest Service department, statutory laws, courts, fines and guards (Fabricius 2004) that criminalized forest resources access by the indigenous African section of society. The conservation policies resulted in over-centralization of forest governance because they were designed and implemented in the context of conquest and subjugation (Mandondo 2000). Saidi and Malivho (2010) argued that the conservation paradigm that was adopted resulted in large tracts of forests getting 'enclosed in fences that were guarded by armed rangers and surrounded by impoverished communities that were denied access into the 'protected areas'. The conservation policies sought 'to rearrange nature as well as people and land' for the benefit of the local settler authorities (Kwashirai 2008).

The centralized top-down governance system focused predominantly on preserving forests for commercial logging purposes to ensure that profits from timber remained a monopoly of the state. Forest condition suffered through commercial logging by concessionaires and poaching by local communities. Scientific management principles such as logging on sustainable yield basis, regular inventories of forest resources to determine the type and volume of timber available, suppression of fuel load through minimum grazing and silviculture done by foresters and forest ecologists were mainly applied. The governance paradigm was based on the ideological orientation of the time (economism, scientism and technocracy) where by experts, using scientific methods were believed to be able to address existing forest problems objectively and efficiently (Ludwig, 2001). Through scientific management forest condition was expected to either remain stable or improve resulting in perpetual provision of timber as well as soil and water conservation.

The governance system of the colonial period was associated with several ills that were an affront to the principles of good governance. It was discriminatory as a few tenants were initially selected to remain in the forest while the rest of the population that was initially resident in the forests was evicted to 'native reserves' such as Gwaai and Shangani communal areas. The evicted population was denied access to forest resources causing poverty amongst former African forest dwellers. Even large herds of livestock were not allowed in the forests to prevent hardening of the earth's surface through trampling and making the conditions difficult for seedlings to take root and become established (Wilkins 1934). The forest legislation and conservation measures that were implemented failed to take into account the intricate relationships and knowledge systems that had developed over the years between people and their forests. It also showed the failure by colonial administrators to understand indigenous forest preservation practices that had sustained the forests before colonialism (Maravanyika 2012).

The main thrust was on restricting access and use of forest resources rather than the development of strategies to ensure their long-term sustainable utilization by local communities and regeneration. Law and policy enforcement strategies ignored local sentiments and it became impossible for local communities wishing to make a living from forest resources to do so without breaking one law or another. These circumstances resulted in conflicts between state agencies and local communities leading to violation of use and exclusion rules (Mandondo 2000, Matose 1997 and Mudekwe 2007). In South Africa and many other southern African states, natural resources related armed confrontations between 'poachers' and state agencies became commonplace by the middle of the 20th century as a result of this exclusive governance system (Bell 1987). Judge (1993), Mudekwe (2007) and Armitage et al. (2012) concur that while mistakes were made that led to steep social costs relating to compliance, enforcement and conflict, the 'command and control' management measures helped to serve the indigenous forests from immense deforestation and degradation and ultimate collapse. Dove and Kammen (1997) criticized the approach for lacking the 'moral' component in the conservation and use of environmental resources. Holling and Meffe (1996) collectively referred to this situation as the 'pathology of natural resources management' that necessitated a change in who makes the decisions and how to escape the pathology now and into the future.

In addition to lessons already implied in the ensuing discussion, it is evident from the colonial era governance approaches that scientific management on its own fails when confronted particularly with complex forest problems. Sustainable forest conservation is a 'wicked problem' and there are no experts to address wicked problems because they have no straight forward solutions (Ludwig 2001). Inclusive governance systems are required, an understanding that informed the emergence of co-management arrangements. Non-participatory approaches such as those of colonial times constitute undesirable governance systems that led to forest degradation. They also undermine people's rights making them unacceptable in the current human rights-centered development dispensation.

Adaptive co-management and its prospects in Zimbabwe's forest protected areas

Devolved governance systems have been widely embraced by the research community and adopted as policy by the majority of governments particularly in developing countries since the early 1980s (Ratner et al. 2012). In Zimbabwe, there were attempts by the FC in the late 1990s to shift from the centralized and state controlled governance regimes that had proved to be a failure in sustainably managing forest protected areas to some semblance of co-management (Shared Forest Management) where the local communities were to participate in forest governance (Chigwenya and Manatsa 2007) to deal with forest degradation and the sour relations between the State and local communities around protected forest areas (Matose 2006). These governance arrangements were introduced in Gwaai, Gwampa and Bembesi to empower grassroots institutions to make decisions pertaining to forest resources conservation, access and benefit sharing. The agreements however, explicitly indicated that ownership of the forests remained with the state with FC remaining the legal custodian of the forests (FC 1997). Residence Committees (RCs) were established to work with FC. Local communities were allowed to access mainly low value forest products such as thatching and broom grass, mushrooms, edible insects and worms, firewood and grazing of livestock under specific license conditions. Like decentralization in India, the state devolved to local communities access to products important for subsistence purposes while the forestry authorities retained control over commercial benefits from the sale of high value resources such as hardwood timber (Agrawal and Ribot 2002). In turn local communities were to participate in some aspects of forest management planning and monitoring of illegal exploiters of forest resources. This was for both researchers and local communities a positive and promising move by the state and forestry authorities as communities started to participate in forest governance.

It is vital as suggested by Cornwall (2008) to scrutinize closely who participates, in what and for whose benefit? The agreements entered with community representatives clearly stated that the ownership of the forest remained with the state and FC remained the legal custodian of the forest and the agreements could be revoked if the FC felt the conservation status of the forest was declining (FC 1997). The intention of FC in initiating community participation was to enhance forest resources protection more than livelihoods improvement of which this was at variance with the locals who thought their livelihoods were going to improve due to their increased involvement in forest governance activities. As it ended up to be, the involvement of locals was meant by FC to be a form of local community control and manipulation by legitimating already-made decisions (Cornwall 2008) and making committee members monitor members of their constituency from illegally accessing forest resources. This would reduce the monitoring costs on the part of FC that was reeling under the shortage of resources due to reduced funding from government under ESAP. The rules for collaboration were formulated by FC and imposed on locals for FC to achieve its own conservation objectives. Key resources highly valued by the locals such as construction timber, farming land and game meat remained excluded from the resource sharing arrangements and therefore continued to be a cause for conflict between FC and the local community (Matose, 2006). With no meaningful benefits from the shared resources arrangements, locals were forced to illegally settle in Gwaai, Bembesi and Gwampa forests and engaged in sabotage activities such as arson, timber and wildlife poaching leading to general environmental degradation in the affected forests (Tsiko 2010). Foresters argued that activities of forest inhabitants and surrounding communities constitute the greatest threat to the continued existence of protected forests. Local communities were therefore not genuinely conferred rights and power to jointly manage the forests. The local communities' enthusiasm fizzled out as it became clear that they had been sold a dummy since no real powers had been devolved and local communities did not get rights to revenues from exploitation of commercial timber, grazing leases and wildlife safari hunting.

Co-management that was implemented on experimental basis in the three of the six case study forests faced challenges some of which are similar to situations in other developing countries. Co-management as a form of decentralization of natural resources governance according to Agrawal and Ribot (2002)'s framework requires the devolution of real powers over the disposition of productive resources and a resolution of divergent interests among multiple actors to prevent one group of stakeholders from disproportionately bearing the externalities associated with resources being managed. Mapedza and Mandondo (2002) have aptly described the pitfalls of co-management not just in Zimbabwe's forest sector, but in various sectors in developing countries. They pointed out that powers over natural resources have remained centralized in the state and its institutions; the little power devolved has ended at levels that are distanced from communities. Furthermore, communities' main role has been to initiate project plans whilst the state and its agencies retained the responsibility of approval, implementation and fiscal control (Chigwenya and Manatsa 2007). For those arrangements that have been hailed as success stories such as CAMPFIRE in Zimbabwe's wildlife sector, there have been concerns that local people have not been doing the real management and impressive benefits have accrued at national and district levels whilst the household level situation has realized little change (Dzingirai 2003, Campbell and Shackleton 2000). Traditional leaders interviewed in Gwaai forest confirmed this by attributing failure of the programmes to marginal benefits that accrued to local communities whilst grazing leases, safari hunting and commercial timber logging incomes wholly accrued to FC and the national government. The contrast in perceptions between FC and local 'experts' indicate the tug-of-war for forest control between forest officials and local communities. One forester stated that:

'our operations always facilitate participation by local people. They harvest resources such as grass, firewood among other non-timber resources. Therefore what else do these people want? For commercial timber proceeds to become part of local community benefits is not good for the commission and overall national development'.

On the other hand, the local elderly 'experts' concurred that as communities, for them to put effort and cooperate with the FC officials they also wanted 'to eat the liver' of the forests, not the peanuts they have always been subjected to since the colonial period. For example, school classrooms in Gwaai west in the late 1990s were still mainly brick under thatch while teachers' houses were built of pole and mud.

Despite the proven importance of local participation and community empowerment in several case studies around the world, the state in Zimbabwe through the FC continues to hold fort its position of primacy frustrating local communities and forcing them to resort to unorthodox activities such as squatting, poaching, setting up veld fires to express their anger and demand greater involvement in forest governance. This shows that the state adopted co-management before it had dislodged itself from its assumed position of control and could not embrace meaningful co-management as has been witnessed in some east African, Asian and south American countries (Matose 2006). One major reason for this scenario is that Zimbabwe's indigenous forests are dominated by hardwood species of high commercial value. They earn the country income that is channeled into national treasury for other national development priorities. The government is unwilling to share forest benefits equally with communities considering the strategic importance of revenue to the national treasury especially in view of the fact that most of its streams of revenue have dried up.

The success of co-management arrangements depends on several socio-economic and political factors. The experimental co-management arrangements in Gwaai, Bembesi and Gwampa collapsed together with the economy and general rule of law. The success stories in countries such as India, Nepal and Tanzania occurred in more or less uniform socioeconomic and political conditions. In Nepal, McDougall et al. (2013) observed that collaborative governance of community forests led to increased income generation, micro-credit and employment of the poorest and female user group members due to increased engagement and influence of the previously marginalized and decision making based on social learning and nested arrangements. Their resilience was not tested under different socio-economic conditions. The unstable and uncertain political and economic environment in Zimbabwe make it difficult to determine governance arrangements that work in the forest sector, because they may work temporarily and then fail when the socio-politico-economic conditions change.

Campbell et al. (2001) questioned the optimism about the effectiveness of co-management arrangements in contemporary conservation discourse as one of the institutional vehicles that can achieve positive conservation outcomes. They found this optimism unfounded in Zimbabwe's forest sector as the few attempts at co-management arrangements are now dysfunctional due to challenges associated with unconducive policy and legislative environment, changing and differentiated household strategies, the economic meltdown and the land reform program that have seen forest areas and their resources constituting important livelihood alternatives leading to a rise in illegal activities. The FC officials confirmed the absence of any meaningful forest governance arrangements to address the challenges that Zimbabwe's forest sector is currently facing. There is therefore the need to formulate and adopt meaningful governance arrangements for the sustainable management of Zimbabwe's indigenous forests.

CONCLUSIONS, POLICY IMPLICATIONS AND FUTURE RESEARCH NEEDS

The paper has addressed a number of forest governance issues. It assessed the application of the good governance principles to determine the quality of forest governance at different historical periods in Zimbabwe's six protected forests. As shown by the presented results, the governance performance in all six study forests was sound during the pre-colonial period, deteriorated during colonial period and did not change much during the post-colonial period. This correspondingly affected forest condition that deteriorated in tandem with deteriorating governance quality as was observed and perceived by forest officials and local elderly 'experts'. Local communities' participation and benefit sharing slightly improved with attempts made for co-management in Gwaai, Mbembesi and Gwampa forests in the 1990s. However, the power struggles between FC officials and local communities over ownership and sharing of benefits from more lucrative resources as well as lack of transparency and accountability led to the collapse of the co-management arrangements. Although rule enforcement has been a challenge during the colonial period and early years of independence, the worst period in rule enforcement resulting in worst forest condition in most affected forests was from the year 2000 when the FTLRP was implemented. The reported poor forest condition under periods of low application of most governance principles shows that forest conservation requires effective application of the good governance principles. Whilst the application of all the assessed principles is desirable for sustainable forest governance to be realized, participation in decision making, fairness in benefits sharing and effective rule enforcement appeared to be most critical to earn local communities' support and improve forest condition.

The paper also analysed the challenges of revitalizing traditional forest governance in modern social and economic set up. Although traditional governance practices have been credited for conserving resources and sustaining livelihoods, contemporary societal conditions associated with population growth, market integration, technical and climate change make it difficult for these systems to resolve complex governance challenges obtaining in the protected forest sector. At the same time forest governance arrangements established during the colonial period failed on the moral component of forest conservation. It also shows that marginalization or non-participation of local communities leads to degradation of forest resources as locals embark on illicit activities to access resources and to undermine state institutions.

Furthermore, the paper interrogated the prospects of co-management in protected forests basing on attempts made in the 1990s and the prevailing socio-economic and legislative environment. The application of the principles remained low leading to perpetuation of poor quality governance. FC was not really ready to embrace genuine co-management as has been the case in countries such as Tanzania, Uganda as well as Asian countries like India, Nepal and Indonesia. The arrangements also became dysfunctional due to challenges associated with unconducive policy and legislative environment, the economic meltdown and the land reform program that have seen forest areas and their resources constituting important livelihood alternatives leading to a rise in illegal activities.

The section on co-management prospects must not be viewed as pessimistic, but it's a call for a detailed understanding and careful consideration of the challenges and hurdles that need to be navigated through for good forest governance to be realized. Co-management, if it is properly designed and adopted has potential to address the complex problems affecting Zimbabwe's indigenous forest sector since it combines elements of traditional systems and scientific methods both of which as separate entities cannot subsist in the prevailing environment. It's recommended that the state and local communities come together and engage in consensus-oriented decision making based on Ansell and Gash (2008)'s critical variables that include pre-history of cooperation and conflict, incentives, power/resource imbalances, facilitative leadership, institutional design and economic conditions. In this study, none of these critical variables was applied when co-management was attempted leading to governance failure. The government should review forest laws and policies to create a conducive regulatory framework that is compatible with real commitment to genuine co-management arrangements and the application of good governance principles. The lack of genuine co-management arrangements and effective application of governance principles will continue to compromise conservation outcomes contradicting the purpose of establishing forest protected areas.

To enable proper designing of co-management arrangements that have greater chances of succeeding, further research is needed to properly characterize currently obtaining governance arrangements within the context of the prevailing economic and political environment and the impact that the FTLRP and the influx of people of diverse socioeconomic backgrounds have had on forest condition. There is also need for quantitative research on the ecology of forest protected areas to form an important baseline for future assessment of governance impact on forest condition.

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V.T. MUTEKWA and J. GAMBIZA

Department of Environmental Science, Rhodes University, Grahamstown 6140, South Africa

Email: vmtekwa@yahoo.co.uk

TABLE 1 The three case study forests with in situ inhabitants
(Forestry Commission Management plans, 2014)

Name of     Year                   Area         Total
forest    gazetted   District   (Hectares)   inhabitants

Gwaai       1930      Lupane     144 300        8 238
Gwampa      1936      Nkayi       47 000        5 371
Bembesi     1941       Bubi       55 100        6 263

TABLE 2 The three case study forests with ex situ
inhabitants (FC management plans, 2014)

Name of forest     Year     District      Area
                 gazetted              (Hectares)

Fuller             1959      Hwange      24 449
Kazuma             1961      Hwange      23 850
Pandamasuie        1961      Hwange      33 500

TABLE 3 A summary of combined qualitative and quantitative scales
used to estimate principles application, governance
quality and forest condition

Governance     Governance quality           Forest condition
principles     desirability
application

1--Very low    7-13 Undesirable             1--Extremely degraded
2--Low         14-20 Moderately desirable   2--Very degraded
3--Moderate    21-27 Very desirable         3--Moderately degraded
4--High        28-35 Extremely desirable    4--Not at all degraded
5--Very high

TABLE 4 Governance principles application, governance quality and
resultant forest condition at different historical periods in forests
with in-situ inhabitants

                           Governance principles' level
                                  of application

Name of   Historical       Transparency   Accountability
Forest    period                          of governing
                                          institutions

Gwaai     Precolonial      high           high

          Colonial         very low       Very low

          War period       very low       Very low

          Early years of   low            low
          independence

          ESAP era         moderate       moderate

          FTLRP era        very low       Very low

Mbembesi  Precolonial      high           high

          Colonial         very low       Very low

          War period       very low       Very low

          Early years of   moderate       moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         high           High

          FTLRP era        very low       Very low

Gwampa    Precolonial      high           high

          Colonial         very low       Very low

          War period       very low       Very low

          Early years of   moderate       moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         moderate       moderate

          FTLRP era        very low       Very low

                           Governance principles' level of
                                      application

Name of   Historical       Participation   Fairness   Rule
Forest    period           of forest       & rights   enforcement
                           users

Gwaai     Precolonial      high            high       High

          Colonial         Very low        Very low   high

          War period       low             moderate   Very low

          Early years of   low             Very low   moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         Moderate        low        low

          FTLRP era        high            moderate   Very low

Mbembesi  Precolonial      high            high       High

          Colonial         Very low        Very low   High

          War period       low             moderate   Very low

          Early years of   moderate        low        moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         high            low        low

          FTLRP era        low             moderate   Very low

Gwampa    Precolonial      high            high       High

          Colonial         Very low        Very low   high

          War period       low             moderate   Very low

          Early years of   moderate        low        moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         moderate        low        low

          FTLRP era        high            moderate   Very low

                           Governance principles' level of
                                    application

Name of   Historical       Legitimacy   Capacity of
Forest    period           and voice    forest
                                        authorities

Gwaai     Precolonial      high         high

          Colonial         Very low     moderate

          War period       low          Very low

          Early years of   low          low
          independence

          ESAP era         low          low

          FTLRP era        low          Very low

Mbembesi  Precolonial      Very high    high

          Colonial         Very low     high

          War period       low          Very low

          Early years of   low          low
          independence

          ESAP era         low          Very low

          FTLRP era        low          Very low

Gwampa    Precolonial      high         high

          Colonial         Very low     moderate

          War period       low          Very low

          Early years of   low          low
          independence

          ESAP era         low          low

          FTLRP era        low          Very low

                           Governance principles' level of
                                     application

Name of   Historical       Governance            Forest
Forest    period           quality               condition
                           desirability

Gwaai     Precolonial      Extremely desirable   Not at all
                           (28)                  degraded

          Colonial         Undesirable (12)      Moderately
                                                 degraded

          War period       Undesirable (11)      Very degraded

          Early years of   Moderately            Moderately
          independence     desirable (14)        degraded

          ESAP era         Moderately            Moderately
                           desirable (17)        degraded

          FTLRP era        Undesirable (13)      Very degraded

Mbembesi  Precolonial      Extremely desirable   Not at all
                           (29)                  degraded

          Colonial         Undesirable (13)      Moderately
                                                 degraded

          War period       Undesirable (11)      Very degraded

          Early years of   Moderately            Moderately
          independence     desirable (18)        degraded

          ESAP era         Moderately            Moderately
                           desirable (19)        degraded

          FTLRP era        Undesirable (11)      Very degraded

Gwampa    Precolonial      Very desirable (28)   Not at all
                                                 degraded

          Colonial         Undesirable (12)      Moderately
                                                 degraded

          War period       Undesirable (11)      Very degraded

          Early years of   Moderately            Moderately
          independence     desirable (16)        degraded

          ESAP era         Undesirable (17)      Moderately
                                                 degraded

          FTLRP era        Undesirable (13)      Extremely
                                                 degraded

TABLE 5 Governance principles application, governance quality and
resultant forest condition at different historical periods in
forests with ex-situ inhabitants

Name of   Historical       Governance principles' level of
Forest    period           application

                           Transparency   Accountability

Fuller    Precolonial      high           high

          Colonial         very low       very low

          War period       very low       very low

          Early years of   moderate       moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         low            low

          FTLRP era        low            low

Kazuma    Precolonial      high           high

          Colonial         very low       Very low

          War period       very low       Very low

          Early years of   moderate       moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         low            low

          FTLRP era        very low       Very low

Panda     Precolonial      high           high
masuie

          Colonial         very low       Very low

          War period       very low       Very low

          Early years of   moderate       moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         low            low

          FTLRP era        moderate       low

Name of   Historical       Governance principles' level of
Forest    period                      application

                           Participation   Fairness &   Rule
                                           rights       enforcement

Fuller    Precolonial      high            high         high

          Colonial         very low        very low     high

          War period       low             low          very low

          Early years of   moderate        Very low     moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         moderate        moderate     low

          FTLRP era        moderate        moderate     low

Kazuma    Precolonial      high            high         High

          Colonial         Very low        Very low     high

          War period       low             moderate     Very low

          Early years of   moderate        low          moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         low             low          low

          FTLRP era        high            moderate     Very low

Panda     Precolonial      high            high         High
masuie

          Colonial         Very low        Very low     High

          War period       low             moderate     Very low

          Early years of   moderate        Very low     moderate
          independence

          ESAP era         moderate        moderate     low

          FTLRP era        moderate        low          Very low

Name of   Historical       Governance principles' level of
Forest    period                 application

                           Legitimacy   Capacity
                           and voice

Fuller    Precolonial      high         high

          Colonial         very low     moderate

          War period       low          very low

          Early years of   low          low
          independence

          ESAP era         low          Very low

          FTLRP era        low          Very low

Kazuma    Precolonial      high         high

          Colonial         Very low     moderate

          War period       low          Very low

          Early years of   moderate     low
          independence

          ESAP era         low          low

          FTLRP era        low          Very low

Panda     Precolonial      high         high
masuie

          Colonial         Very low     low

          War period       low          Very low

          Early years of   low          low
          independence

          ESAP era         low          low

          FTLRP era        low          Very low

Name of   Historical       Governance            Forest
Forest    period           quality               condition
                           desirability

Fuller    Precolonial      Extremely desirable   Not at all
                           (28)                  degraded

          Colonial         Undesirable (12)      Moderately
                                                 degraded

          War period       Undesirable (10)      Very degraded

          Early years of   Moderately            Moderately
          independence     desirable (17)        degraded

          ESAP era         Moderately            Moderately
                           desirable (15)        degraded

          FTLRP era        Moderately            Moderately
                           desirable (15)        degraded

Kazuma    Precolonial      Extremely desirable   Not at all
                           (28)                  degraded

          Colonial         Undesirable (12)      Moderately
                                                 degraded

          War period       Undesirable (11)      Moderately
                                                 degraded

          Early years of   Moderately            Moderately
          independence     desirable (18)        degraded

          ESAP era         Moderately            Moderately
                           desirable (14)        degraded

          FTLRP era        Undesirable (13)      Degraded

Panda     Precolonial      Extremely desirable   Not at all
masuie                     (28)                  degraded

          Colonial         Undesirable (11)      Moderately
                                                 degraded

          War period       Undesirable (11)      Very degraded

          Early years of   Moderately            Moderately
          independence     desirable (17)        degraded

          ESAP era         Moderately            Moderately
                           desirable (16)        degraded

          FTLRP era        Moderately            Moderately
                           desirable (14)        degraded
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Author:Mutekwa, V.T.; Gambiza, J.
Publication:International Forestry Review
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Geographic Code:6ZIMB
Date:Dec 1, 2016
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