This Review from The Forests Dialogue (TFD) seeks to share and synthesize the experiences of TFD dialogue participants, thought leaders, and partner organizations with community engagement in forest landscapes. By mining TFD publications and case studies from the varied geographies in which TFD has conducted multi-stakeholder dialogues, and consolidating insights and experiences into ‘key lessons learned,’ this review aims to ground recommendations on community engagement - whether actionable or conceptual - based on the learning and discussions from TFD’s initiatives over the past two decades.
Following an overview of the origins and intent of this publication, the review outlines the definitions of ‘community’ and ‘community engagement’ which provide a crucial background to understanding lessons learned, as well as highlighting TFD’s relationship to community engagement. A series of seven key lessons learned are discussed in depth, grounded in specific TFD dialogues and publications. Each lesson includes a dialogue experience in which the learning took place, recommendations for stakeholder action and/or conceptual shift, as well as a case study relevant to the lesson in community engagement at hand.