April 2011, Polity
This trailblazing book is the first to expose what's happening inside corporate commodity chains with conclusions that fundamentally challenge our understanding of how and why deforestation persists. Authors Peter Dauvergne and Jane Lister reveal how timber now moves through long and complex supply chains from the forests of the global South through the factories of emerging economies like China to the big box retail shelves of Europe and North America. Well-off consumers are getting unprecedented deals. But the social and environmental costs are extraordinarily high as corporations mine the world's poorest regions and most vulnerable ecosystems.
The growing power of big retail within these commodity chains is further increasing South-North inequities and unsustainable global consumption. Yet, as this book's highly original analysis uncovers, it is also creating some intriguing opportunities to promote more responsible business practices and better global forest governance.
1 The Global Political Economy of Timber
2 The Power of Big Retail
3 The Northern Forest and Paper Multinationals
4 The Rise of the Third World
5 Consuming the South
6 Governing Timber Consumption
"In what increasingly reads like a Sherlock Holmes thriller, the authors unravel the alliances and corruption of the giant multinational players involved in the rape of the forests."
"A rich, detailed, and insightful account of the power of big
box retailers within global forest commodity chains. By offering an
intriguing empirical account of the power of big box retailers
within global commodity chains, the book speaks beyond the subject
of timber to inform more theoretical discussions of corporate power
in a globalized economy."
Review of Policy Research
"A great resource for improving the role retailers and consumers
play in the management of the world's forests."
"A very good introduction to the timber industry."
Environment and Planning C
"A welcome - and recommended - contribution to considerations of
the challenges facing current and future forest use."
"Flows well in leading to its conclusion. Unlike many critiques,
Timber provides a plausible answer to the problem it
"An interesting and, in parts, troubling book on the nature of
deforestation throughout the world, that holds relevance for
Furniture and Cabinetmaking
"Timber uncovers the dark world of commodity chains that
link the wood in our lives to global deforestation, and offers rays
of hope for promising change. It elicits not simply intellectual
engagement but deep gratitude toward the authors for their
penetrating research, political insights and clarity of expression.
The book should be required reading for everyone."
Paul Wapner, American University, Washington DC
"A deep and incisive expose of the roles that timber and retail
interests play in driving deforestation, the enormous economic
power they wield in the market place and the tactics they use to
influence small firms. The book speaks beyond the subject of timber
to provide an original and thoughtful commentary on how
international commodity chains shape not only the global economy
but the global environment."
David Humphreys, Open University
"A brilliant and powerful book that allows us to see the forest
for the trees. Its stunning exposè is a must-read for scholars
and practitioners seeking a more promising and sustainable
Ben Cashore, Yale University
"Fascinating ... This book is an essential source of objective
knowledge on the role that industry, retailers and consumers play
in determining whether the world's forests are adequately
Michael Jenkins, President, Forest Trends
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