Journal of Forest Economics > Vol 20 > Issue 4

Factors affecting participation in joint forest management in the West Bengal state of India

Sebak Kumar Jana, Department of Economics with Rural Development, Vidyasagar University, Midnapore, India, Wietze Lise, AF Mercados EMI, Turkey, , Mamtajuddin Ahmed, Department of Zoology, Garhbeta College, India
Suggested Citation
Sebak Kumar Jana, Wietze Lise and Mamtajuddin Ahmed (2014), "Factors affecting participation in joint forest management in the West Bengal state of India", Journal of Forest Economics: Vol. 20: No. 4, pp 317-332.

Publication Date: 0/12/2014
© 0 2014 Sebak Kumar Jana, Wietze Lise, Mamtajuddin Ahmed
JEL Codes:C31C72Q23
Participation in forest managementIndiaPrincipal component analysisRegression analysisGame theoretic model estimation


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In this article:
Materials and method 
Results and discussion 


This study analyses participation in joint forest management (JFM). The study is based on in-depth interviews with 150 households of Forest Protection Committees (FPC) in Paschim Medinipur district in the West Bengal state of India. Based on a Principal Component Analysis (PCA) of 14 participatory indicators, it follows that “social” aspects of participation are considerably less important in West Bengal than as found elsewhere in India, while the perception of the environment (first and third factor) stand out as the most important aspects of participation in JFM, jointly explaining almost half of the variance. Regression analyses indicate that household size, the number of forest committee meetings, religion of the household, willingness to pay of the household for the forest protection and the size of land holding are important variables for explaining variation in levels of participation. Results from estimating game theoretic models on participation among villagers in JFM indicates that in two out of the four possible situations, harmonious sharing of the benefits is an (Nash) equilibrium, but not unique. In all cases, institutional checks and balances are needed to guarantee mutual participation, which is possible only by strengthening the JFM management body.