University of Oulu

Nijnik, M.; Kluvánková, T.; Melnykovych, M.; Nijnik, A.; Kopiy, S.; Brnkaľáková, S.; Sarkki, S.; Kopiy, L.; Fizyk, I.; Barlagne, C.; Miller, D. An Institutional Analysis and Reconfiguration Framework for Sustainability Research on Post-Transition Forestry—A Focus on Ukraine. Sustainability 2021, 13, 4360.

An institutional analysis and reconfiguration framework for sustainability research on post-transition forestry : a focus on Ukraine

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Author: Nijnik, Maria1; Kluvánková, Tatiana2; Melnykovych, Mariana3;
Organizations: 1The James Hutton Institute, Craigiebuckler, Aberdeen AB15 8QH, UK
2SlovakGlobe, Slovak University of Technology and Slovak Academy of Sciences, Vazovova 5, 81243 Bratislava, Slovakia
3Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research, WSL, Zürcherstrasse 111, 8903 Birmensdorf, Switzerland
4Environmental Network Ltd., Aboyne AB34 5BR, UK
5Ukrainian National Forestry University, Gen. Chuprynky Str., 103, 79057 Lviv, Ukraine
6Cultural Anthropology, University of Oulu, Pentti Kaiteran katu 1, FI-90014 Linnanmaa, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.4 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-06-11


In this paper, we elaborate an Institutional Analysis and Reconfiguration Framework centered around the ‘action arena’ theoretical approach. We develop this framework to analyze institutional reconfiguration to enhance sustainability, and operationalize it using research methods which focus on documentation of the institutional contexts through an extensive literature review and interviews of experts in forest policy. We apply the Institutional Analysis and Reconfiguration Framework to examine forestry institutions, address forest governance, and investigate their effect on socio-economic and environmental performances in forestry of Ukraine. The paper draws on the state of affairs in post-transition forestry, its difficulties, and new prospects for economic and institutional reforms. We examine challenges and opportunities in forestry and suggest key remedies and prospective ways forward. Results show that a combination of path dependency with the rigidity of institutions and a slow pace of economic and political reforms is the major obstacle to implementing decisions regarding sustainable forest policy. A reconfiguration of social practices is required, as well as the development of capabilities and awareness raising amongst relevant stakeholders, to realize the problems, envision alternative futures, challenge existing institutions, shift power relations and create new norms, rules, and decision-making arrangements. The way towards sustainability in forestry largely goes through changing institutions, and a human dimension of institutional changes reflected in the uptake of social innovation.

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Series: Sustainability
ISSN: 2071-1050
ISSN-E: 2071-1050
ISSN-L: 2071-1050
Volume: 13
Issue: 8
Article number: 4360
DOI: 10.3390/su13084360
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 520 Other social sciences
616 Other humanities
Funding: This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme under Grant Agreement No. 677622, (SIMRA—Social Innovation in Marginalised Rural Areas) and GA 862448 (SHERPA). It was also partly funded by the Rural & Environment Science & Analytical Services Division of the Scottish Government through its Strategic Research Programme (2016–2021) and Research Grant Agency of the Slovak republic (Vega) for the project No.: 2/0170/21.
EU Grant Number: (677622) SIMRA - Social Innovation in Marginalised Rural Areas
Copyright information: © 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (