Local participation in community forest management using theory of planned behaviour: evidence from Udon Thani Province, Thailand

  • Chidchanok Apipoonyanon
  • Sylvia SzaboEmail author
  • John K. M. Kuwornu
  • Mokbul Morshed Ahmad
Original Article


Effective participatory management of natural resources is critical for long-term environmental sustainability and the well-being of the local population. This study used the theory of planned behaviour to examine participation in community forest management. Primary data were collected through household survey, and hypotheses were tested by using the structural equation modelling approach. The empirical results revealed that attitude, subjective norms, perceived behavioural control and self-efficacy are significant predictors of local participation. The results further showed that individuals aged 46–60 years, farmers and those earning at least 20,001 Thai Baht per month were more likely to have positive attitudes towards participation in community forest management programs. Therefore, the government should consider intensifying efforts to engage these groups in participatory policy-making.


Community forest development Theory of planned behaviour Local participation Structural equation modelling Thailand 


Une gestion participative efficace des ressources naturelles est essentielle à la pérennité environnementale et au bien-être des populations locales sur le long terme. Cette étude a utilisé la théorie du comportement planifié pour examiner la participation à la gestion communautaire des forêts. Des données primaires ont été collectées par le biais d’une enquête auprès des ménages et les hypothèses ont été testées en utilisant l’approche de modélisation par équation structurelle. Les résultats empiriques ont révélé que l’attitude, les normes subjectives, le contrôle comportemental perçu et l’efficacité personnelle sont les prédicteurs les plus significatifs de la participation locale. Les résultats ont également montré que les individus âgés de 46 à 60 ans, les agriculteurs et ceux gagnant au moins 20 001 Baht thaïlandais par mois étaient plus susceptibles d’avoir une attitude positive à l’égard de la participation aux programmes de gestion communautaire des forêts. Par conséquent, le gouvernement devrait envisager d’intensifier ses efforts pour faire participer ces groupes à l’élaboration de politiques participatives.



This research would not have been possible without the full cooperation of many individuals. The authors would like to express their gratitude to the Director of Community Forest Management Bureau, Royal Forest Department and the staff at Udon Thani Provincial Department of Royal Forest Office for their valuable help, opinions and information with regard to this research project. We also thank Mrs. Lumpai and Mr. Noi, the community forest committee and the villagers from Huai Rai Burapa and Nong Bua Ngern villages for providing their expertise and access to facilities for the purposes of this research.


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Copyright information

© European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chidchanok Apipoonyanon
    • 1
  • Sylvia Szabo
    • 1
    Email author
  • John K. M. Kuwornu
    • 2
  • Mokbul Morshed Ahmad
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Development and Sustainability, School of Environment, Resources and DevelopmentAsian Institute of TechnologyKlong LuangThailand
  2. 2.Department of Food, Agriculture and Bioresources, School of Environment, Resources and DevelopmentAsian Institute of TechnologyKlong LuangThailand

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