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Special Issue: Beyond Carbon: Enabling Justice and Equity in REDD+ Across Levels of Governance

Schroeder, Heike, Thomas Sikor, Constance McDermott (editors). 2014. Special Issue: Beyond Carbon: Enabling Justice and Equity in REDD+ Across Levels of Governance. Ecology and Society, 19(1).


The global nature of climate change and the globalization of environmental governance have highlighted the challenges of enabling justice and equity across diverse societies and multiple levels of governance. At the center of these challenges are ongoing debates over the distribution of rights and responsibilities for environmental and social impacts. These debates have been variously framed in normative terms, drawing on particular norms of justice or equity as de facto goals in and of themselves, or based in instrumentalist arguments. Perhaps nowhere have these debates been more complex and multi-faceted than under Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD+), a mechanism of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). REDD+ has become inextricably entangled in fundamental debates about justice and equity from local to global levels. 

This Special Feature, therefore, aims to shed light on how various scholars are examining the complex landscape of justice and equity in REDD+, with particular attention to the multiple levels of governance in which they play out. Taken as a whole, findings highlight the importance of ongoing holistic assessment of justice and equity in REDD+. While there may never be full agreement on what is fair multi-level governance, a better understanding of how REDD+ is actually unfolding provides invaluable opportunities for more informed stakeholder dialogue and learning.

Table of Contents

Schroeder, H., C. McDermott. 2014. “Beyond carbon: enabling justice and equity in REDD+ across levels of governance.” Ecology and Society 19(1): 31.

Pokorny, B., I. Scholz, and W. de Jong. 2013. “REDD+ for the poor or the poor for REDD+? About the limitations of environmental policies in the Amazon and the potential of achieving environmental goals through pro-poor policies.” Ecology and Society 18(2): 3.

Danielsen, F., T. Adrian, S. Brofeldt, M. van Noordwijk, M. K. Poulsen, S. Rahayu, E. Rutishauser, I. Theilade, A. Widayati, N. The An, T. Nguyen Bang, A. Budiman, M. Enghoff, A. E. Jensen, Y. Kurniawan, Q. Li, Z. Mingxu, D. Schmidt-Vogt, S. Prixa, V. Thoumtone, Z. Warta, and N. Burgess. 2013. “Community monitoring for REDD+: international promises and field realities.” Ecology and Society 18(3): 41.

Savaresi, A. 2013. “REDD+ and human rights: addressing synergies between international regimes.” Ecology and Society 18(3): 5.

Rival, L. M. 2013. “From carbon projects to better land-use planning: three Latin American initiatives.” Ecology and Society 18(3): 17.

Di Gregorio, M., M. Brockhaus, T. Cronin, E. Muharrom, L. Santoso, S. Mardiah, and M. Büdenbender. 2013. “Equity and REDD+ in the media: a comparative analysis of policy discourses.” Ecology and Society 18(2): 39.

Krause, T., W. Collen, and K. A. Nicholas. 2013. “Evaluating safeguards in a conservation incentive program: participation, consent, and benefit sharing in indigenous communities of the Ecuadorian Amazon.” Ecology and Society 18(4): 1.

Luttrell, C., L. Loft, M. F. Gebara, D. Kweka, M. Brockhaus, A. Angelsen, and W. D. Sunderlin. 2013. “Who should benefit from REDD+? Rationales and realities.” Ecology and Society 18(4): 52.

Wallbott, L. 2014. “Indigenous peoples in UN REDD+ negotiations: “importing power” and lobbying for rights through discursive interplay management.” Ecology and Society 19(1): 21.

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