Date of Graduation

Summer 7-6-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in International Studies (MAIS)


College of Arts and Sciences


International Studies

First Advisor

Brian Dowd-Uribe

Second Advisor

John Zarobell


The UN-REDD+ Readiness Programme was conducted between 2009 and 2015. The REDD+ Programme in Nigeria began once the readiness program was completed. This study conducts a document analysis of the program utilizing a political ecology lens to determine the extent to which the program adheres to or strays away from critical narratives surrounding both drivers of deforestation and inclusion and autonomy of federal, state, and local communities. By examining the entirety of the available documentation of the REDD+ Readiness program in Nigeria using a political ecological lens, this study demonstrates both an evolution of the program itself, and an evolution of reforestation efforts conducted by UN-REDD+. This study finds that while the REDD+ Programme in Nigeria began by utilizing satellite imagery to conduct its analysis of forest cover, the program later incorporated information gathered from local communities in order to form a better understanding of forest cover as well as the drivers of deforestation and forest degradation. Indeed, while the program began with the claim that subsistence farming was the prime driver of deforestation and forest degradation, at its conclusion, macroeconomic farming took over as the leading driver and many other drivers were added to the program’s list of drivers. This study also finds that the REDD+ Programme in Nigeria was effective at empowering and giving autonomy to Nigerian actors at the federal, state, and local levels by utilizing a bottom-up approach as opposed to a top-down approach.