New training manual for agroforestry in ASEAN

Nairobi, Kenya, 18 June 2020 – A new training manual for agroforestry has been jointly developed by World Agroforestry (ICRAF) and RECOFTC, a Bangkok-based international organization

Agroforestry for climate-resilient landscapes is designed to support agricultural and forestry extensionists, advisors and practitioners working on agroforestry. The publication was funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation through the ASEAN-Swiss Partnership on Social Forestry and Climate Change.

The manual will help Member States of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) to adopt agroforestry practices for landscape resilience. ASEAN has a combined population of more than 650 million, with a large agricultural sector that is increasingly experiencing severe impacts of climate change. This threatens food security and the livelihoods of millions.

Agroforestry can build resilience to climate change and improve the livelihoods of farming communities. It is widely applied in various production landscapes, including community forestry, to maximize economic and environmental benefits, especially those of smallholders. Agroforestry plays a significant role in the restoration of forest landscapes and helps to fill gaps in livelihoods that can occur in the short term during natural disasters, climate events or restoration of landscapes.

To achieve the maximum benefits of agroforestry, practitioners need to understand the principles of agroforestry and how they can be applied to build the adaptive capacity and resilience of local communities to deal with the impacts of climate change. Practitioners need to be able to support farmers in designing, establishing and managing agroforestry systems. Good agroforestry practice includes considering different social and ecological contexts, market opportunities and access to resources. In reality, more agricultural extensionists and rural advisors are needed who are able to support communities as they develop agroforestry. 

Members of the ASEAN Working Group on Social Forestry and its secretariat provided inputs to the manual to ensure its relevance to a range of socioeconomic and cultural conditions in ASEAN countries. 

Each training session was tested with a range of audiences at national and international levels, including mid-level government officers, staff of non-governmental organizations and academics in Thailand, Myanmar and Viet Nam.

The manual covers important aspects of agroforestry development in the context of climate-resilient landscapes. Its technical guidelines will help agroforestry practitioners assist farmers in designing, establishing and managing agroforestry systems on their farms and forest lands. The skills and knowledge gained can be applied to peatlands, uplands, lowlands or other land categories. 

The manual also provides basic materials and tools for practitioners to use following the course. These guidelines and tools are particularly useful in the context of transformation of food systems, biodiversity enhancement, community forestry, restoration of forest landscapes and climate change in ASEAN Member States and should be adaptable to many other regions with similar conditions. 


Download the manual

RECOFTC, World Agroforestry (ICRAF), ASEAN Working Group on Social Forestry. 2020. Agroforestry for climate-resilient landscapes. Bangkok, Thailand: RECOFTC.

Media Enquiries:

Jeanne Finestone, Head of Communications, ICRAF:; +254 711 946327.
Sandra McGuire, Director of Knowledge Management and Strategic Communication, RECOFTC: 

About World Agroforestry (ICRAF)

ICRAF is a centre of scientific and development excellence that harnesses the benefits of trees for people and the environment. Knowledge produced by ICRAF enables governments, development agencies and farmers to utilize the power of trees to make farming and livelihoods more environmentally, socially and economically sustainable at multiple scales. ICRAF is one of the 15 members of the CGIAR, a global research partnership for a food-secure future. We thank all donors who support research in development through their contributions to the CGIAR Fund.


RECOFTC is an international non-profit organization working in the Asia Pacific. It believes in a future where people live equitably and sustainably in and beside healthy, resilient forests. It takes a long-term, landscape-based and inclusive approach to supporting local communities to secure their land and resource rights, stop deforestation, find alternative livelihoods and foster gender equity. RECOFTC’s innovations, knowledge and initiatives enable countries to foster good forest governance, mitigate and adapt to climate change, and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations 2030 Agenda.