Session 3

Emergent, unexpected outcomes, impact and side-effects of FLEGT action

What unexpected outcomes and impacts, both positive and negative, have emerged through the EU FLEGT Action Plan in partner countries, EU member states, and in other producer and consumer countries?

Facilitators: Marlen Arkesteijn and Yann Petrucci


In this working session, the evaluation team seeks to expand its perspective on positive and negative unexpected outcomes and impacts, both positive and negative, that have resulted from FLEGT Actions, in partner countries, Member State countries, or other producer and consumer countries, and to understand the mechanisms and pathways that led to them. This could include anything that moves beyond the immediate purpose and objectives of the FLEGT AP, such as changes in public procurement in partner countries, increased respect for forest worker's rights, enhanced cooperation between various national or international departments and ministries, and the disappearance of small and medium enterprises or the informal sector.

The EU FLEGT Action Plan is a policy initiative without an explicit theory of how the various action areas reinforce and strengthen each other, and how these action areas could ultimately contribute to achieving its objectives. Therefore, it may seem challenging to talk about expected outcomes and impact and hence about ‘emergent unexpected outcomes and impacts'. Nonetheless, there seems to be a ‘common' understanding of what expected EU FLEGT AP outcomes and impacts are: reduced supply of illegal timber, reduced demand for and trade in illegal timber and timber products and improved forest governance. Other results can be considered unintended or emergent outcomes and impacts.


  • To harvest, share and reflect on the unexpected outcomes and impacts of the EU FLEGT AP and their underlying mechanisms (that evoked these outcomes and impacts to happen) from a broad range of EU FLEGT AP stakeholders.
  • To identify further sources of evidence and analysis.

Main questions

  1. What, in your experience, have been the unexpected outcomes and impacts of the FLEGT AP?
  2. What actors, factors and/or mechanisms account for these unexpected outcomes and impacts?
  3. What lessons do these outcomes/impacts and their underlying mechanisms teach us for future actions?

Target audience

Actors from the main EU FLEGT AP stakeholder groups: government, private sector and civil society from partner countries, EC, EU Member States and other producer and consumer countries 

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