Restructuring Africa's foreign education uri icon


  • In Africa, unlike in the west, local people are more dependent on forests for their livelihoods. In addition to timber, forests supply food, fuelwood, medicine, building poles and dry season grazing. In spite of this, fore stry education over the last 70 years has focused mainly on timber production and wate r conservation and neglected other forest uses and products e.g., non-timber products, biodiversity, eco-tourism, etc. The central governments have reinforced this bias by putting a premium on timber production and water catchment value while undervaluing the other forest uses. Increasingly, however, changes in public perception of forests and forestry are defining new approaches to the conservation and use of trees and forests. Reco gnition of forests as major carbon sinks is raising the number of stakeholders and influencing the goals, science and practice of managing trees and forests. Reconciling all inte rests is hard for the forester and even harder for the forestry educa tion curriculum developer. In th is paper, we reflect on the history and status of forestry education in Africa and propose some ideas for the future

publication date

  • 2008