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Governing sustainability of bioenergy, biomaterial and bioproduct supply chains from forest and agricultural landscapes

Editors: Tat Smith, Nicholas Clarke, Inge Stupak

Agriculture and forestry produce a large range of goods for the welfare of society, including biomass for bioenergy, biochemicals and biomaterials is increasingly recognized. Management activities associated with biomass production systems for both traditional and newer end uses span over large portions of productive regions and are some of the largest human impacts on nature and the environment. As the global population and its wealth increases, the challenge to find an acceptable balance between economic activities and their impacts on climate, nature, environment and people also increases. Governance is a means to finding compromises among the different interests, but they are under scrutiny and often criticized for not being democratic, effective and efficient and thus legitimate and credible. There is as such a need to examine sustainability governance systems in different regions, as a basis for building theory on how trust and legitimacy of sustainability governance systems can be improved in different economic, cultural and practical conditions. As part of this analysis, there is also a need to examine how data and scientific knowledge can inform the development of well-functioning, credible and legitimate sustainability governance systems for bioenergy and the bioeconomy. Finally, it is crucial to understand the role of transparency, communication and information exchange between researchers and other stakeholders involved with sustainability governance for bioenergy and the bioeconomy for finding ways forward to a more sustainable development.

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