iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry


Use of multi-criteria analysis (MCA) for supporting community forest management

C Khadka   , H Vacik

iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry, Volume 5, Issue 2, Pages 60-71 (2012)
doi: https://doi.org/10.3832/ifor0608-009
Published: Apr 12, 2012 - Copyright © 2012 SISEF

Research Articles

Sustainable forest management usually involves the use of criteria and indicators (C&I) allowing the monitoring, reporting and assessment of management activities at national, regional and forest management unit levels. Experiences of such concepts are scarce in Nepal, particularly with regard to the evaluation of management activities within a Multi-Criteria Analysis (MCA) framework. In this contribution we describe how a MCA approach can be used to efficiently exploit information, knowledge, and preferences of stakeholders to address community forest management problems. Beside rating and ranking techniques, the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) is used to examine the importance of six criteria and forty-four indicators in a sustainable forest management context with a broad range of stakeholder groups. An evaluation of four management strategies in the Shree Gyneshwar community forest user group allows to demonstrate the relevance of changing priorities for different criteria. A passive adaptive management strategy focusing on a multiple use of natural resources and the introduction of production-oriented measures were identified as the most preferable option. The results of this study show that the multi-criteria analysis approach, and in particular the AHP, can assist decision-makers in efficiently evaluating management problems and generating ideas for the long-term strategic planning process of community forest management, even under complex socio-economic and ecological conditions. In that context, compromise solutions enjoy a higher possibility of being successful, taking into account the different views of stakeholder groups.


Multiple-criteria decision-making, Sustainable forest management, AHP, Criteria and indicators, Community forestry, Nepal

Authors’ address

C Khadka
H Vacik
University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Department of Forest and Soil Sciences, Institute of Silviculture, Peter Jordan Straβe 82, A-1190, Vienna (Austria)

Corresponding author


Khadka C, Vacik H (2012). Use of multi-criteria analysis (MCA) for supporting community forest management. iForest 5: 60-71. - doi: 10.3832/ifor0608-009

Academic Editor

Marco Borghetti

Paper history

Received: Oct 02, 2011
Accepted: Feb 12, 2012

First online: Apr 12, 2012
Publication Date: Apr 30, 2012
Publication Time: 2.00 months

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