Laura Hayward

PhD Anthropology University of Kent (UK) 2011 (Documentation of an Endangered Language of Cameroon)

MA (Joint Hons.) English Language and Linguistics University of Edinburgh (UK)

Laura is an evaluation and monitoring specialist. She joined LTS in August 2017 and is primarily responsible for providing technical inputs into and managing evaluations.  Over the last eight years, Laura has project-managed or contributed to over thirty research and evaluation projects.

Prior to joining LTS, Laura was evaluation and business development lead for humanitarian aid evaluations at ICF (a London-based consultancy). Topics covered included DFID and ECHO (EU) nutrition programmes in West Africa, a drought-management programme in the Horn of Africa (EU) and education in emergencies programmes globally (EU).  Laura has also worked on and led a large number of research projects in the field of migration and human rights. She has developed monitoring systems for DG ECHO, DG HOME, the Fundamental Rights Agency and the Council of Europe; for the latter she also co-designed a project management methodology.

Since joining LTS, Laura has managed two evaluations for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in the area of renewable energy and carbon emissions reductions. She is also a key contributor to the consortium-led evaluation of the Prosperity Fund (with WYG and Integrity).

Laura recently became a member of the Council of the UK Evaluation Society. In this role she will be developing the Society’s communications (website and journal).

Evaluation of the Congo Basin Forest Fund


This contract provides an independent evaluation of the Congo Basin Forest Fund (CBFF), which was established in 2008 to reduce deforestation across the Congo Basin.

  • The 10-year CBFF was initially funded by the UK and Norway, and later Canada.
  • The CBFF is administered/managed by the African Development Bank (AfDB), who contracted this evaluation.
  • Calls for CBFF proposals in 2008 and 2009 have funded 38 projects, EUR 52.6 million has been disbursed.
  • LTS is managing the evaluation, fielding a team of 10 (6 international, plus Cameroon and DRC country teams).


The Congo Basin Forest Fund (CBFF) is a ten-year programme, which aims to reduce deforestation through innovative and transformative projects. It was established in 2008 and is expected to finish in 2018. Two of the funding agencies decided to stop funding the CBFF early, while the third has continued. This has stimulated the call by the third donor for an independent evaluation looking at what has worked and what has not, and what value the Fund has added.


LTS has been contracted to provide this independent evaluation. The work includes preparing background papers on the performance of the portfolio of CBFF projects and the performance of the CBFF programme governance and implementation; as well as primary data collection and analysis (case studies).

The findings from these will provide the basis for the Draft and Final Evaluation Reports.

Value and benefits

The reports and findings will inform decision making at the executive/programme level and ensure accountability and lesson learning at the project level (for the CBFF Secretariat / AfDB and for implementing partners/project grantees). The intention is to inform and shape future programmes and thereby improve development impact.


Image credits to MONUSCO

Rebecca Adler

MSc with Distinction, Environmental Sustainability, University of Edinburgh, 2011; BA, International Relations, Tufts University, Medford, Massachusetts, 2004

Rebecca has a solid understanding of programme management, framework management and coordination as well as technical expertise in natural resource and forest management. In her role at LTS, Rebecca supports a variety of initiatives, including several FLEGT programmes, such as the on-going support to the Liberia VPA programme. She is well versed in providing support and expertise to complex forestry programmes as she has previously managed several long-term multi-million dollar USAID environmental management programmes. In addition, she is experienced in framework management and coordination, having supported activities and call down contracts for the USAID PLACE IQC. In these positions, she frequently managed complex budgets, developed technical field based activities and maintained relationships with key partners and stakeholders. In addition, she frequently travelled to projects and contributed to the development of workplans, logical frameworks and performance monitoring plans and created programme reports and communication materials. Most recently, Ms. Adler has completed an MSc at the University of Edinburgh where her studies focused on analyzing international policies related to forestry management, climate change and environmental management. In addition, she studied political science at University of Paris VIII and is fluent in French.

Tillem Burlace

MSc Ecological Economics, University of Edinburgh, 2014. BCom (Economics), Deakin University, 2005. BA (Sociology), Deakin University, 2005.

Tillem is a senior consultant at LTS who works on applied economics. She previously worked for the Economics Branch in the Victorian Department of Sustainability and Environment in Australia as an economist advising on a range of innovative market-based mechanisms, including trialling the native vegetation exchange – a smart market mechanism for the native vegetation (biodiversity) offset market. Tillem also worked in Vietnam as a Climate Change Officer with the Centre for Sustainable Rural Development where she prepared technical manuals on gender and climate change mainstreaming and undertook baseline surveys for a disaster risk reduction programme. Prior to this she was an economist with the Victorian Department of Treasury and Finance providing analysis and advice to the Treasurer on areas including climate change, energy and forestry issues, and the Commonwealth Government’s emissions trading scheme. Tillem is passionate about finding solutions to the complex social and environmental challenges facing our world. She is particularly interested in the nexus between development and the environment and finding solutions that balance social development, economic growth and environmental sustainability.

Tillem has experience in working on projects in Indonesia, Malawi, Cameroon and Liberia.

Spatial Planning for Sustainable Land Use Planning

This assignment developed the first common mapping platform for the Nguti district of Cameroon, which brings together multiple map layers to enable ecological, social and economic values to be considered in unison when making land planning decisions, enabling a transparent and open decision process.

  • The work was contracted by the REDD+ Facility of the European Forest Institute (EFI).
  • LTS led the work, working with Rainbow Consult (Cameroon), ProForest (during the inception phase), and WRI.
  • LTS applied specific technical knowledge on spatial planning tools for forestry.

A new, tailored spatial planning tool was developed for use.


There has been limited experience of drafting land use plans in the region that can reconcile the various interests in land, in a balanced and negotiated manner, in particular in the context of the emerging REDD+ mechanism to valorise carbon stocks. As a result, EFI’s REDD+ Facility identified the need for a transparent spatial planning tool that better addresses both social and environmental concerns as a pre-requisite for the responsible implementation of REDD+.


The LTS team advised EFI on potential tools to assist with spatial planning around land use decisions, and developed a tailored mapping platform, the basis of which was provided by WRI. LTS staff were responsible for the development of:

  • An interactive mapping tool that identifies potential priority areas for development / protection
  • A field assessment protocol.

Value and benefits

This tool will facilitate the transparent sharing of information between multiple stakeholders to explore and discuss potential social, environmental and economic impacts of various land use options (such as palm oil, cocoa, staple food crops for local markets, etc.) and other land uses, such as maintenance of high carbon stock forests for REDD+ projects.

The results will enable and inform the next phase of land use planning in the context of competing land use options.

Supporting the Implementation of FLEGT Voluntary Partnership Agreement

The Government of Cameroon and the European Commission concluded negotiations of the Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) in May 2010 and the agreement was ratified in June 2011. LTS provided support to the implementation of the FLEGT VPA to build capacity of the Ministry of Forests and Wildlife (MINFOF) in the planning and monitoring the implementation of its Legality Assurance Systems (LAS). In 2012, the LTS team assisted the government of Cameroon to:

  • agree on responsibilities for different levels of LAS administration
  • support staff of the Department of Standards (SN) within the Ministry in project monitoring and tracking the implementation
  • assist the SN in the development of planning tools and monitoring the implementation of LAS
  • support the MINFOF with engaging stakeholders in the implementation of the verification system of law in the context of the VPA

LTS also reviewed and facilitated the development of verification procedures and trained LAS managers on the new VPA requirements.

Timber Tracking System

The timber tracking system is a component of the Voluntary Partnership Agreements developed by the European Union. It is set up to monitor harvested timber from origin (physical location of operations) to destination (port of export or processing plant) and also from destination to origin.

LTS was contracted by SGS Cameroon who implemented an EC funded project with the overall objective to study the needs and conditions for the implementation of the Timber Traceability System Cameroon (STBC) in its pilot phase.
Specific objectives were:

  • to review and validate standard operating procedures (SOP) system for the pilot phase with key project stakeholders;
  • to ensure and assure the compliance of systems and processes with the Cameroonian legal and regulatory framework as put into practice and prevailing for the pilot phase and, subsequently, in the context of SVL/LAS and FLEGT VPA;
  • to prepare for system tests at the pilot sites by performing an inventory on the ground in order to collect essential information and assess needs and conditions for the implementation of the pilot, including the acquisition of technical equipment for deployment and implementation of pilot activities to support requirements (training, communication, etc.);
  • to carry out field missions with teams of the MINFOF to the pilot sites for logging, processing plants, regional offices and departments and checkpoints;
  • to perform a gap analysis for the implementation of the tracking system
  • to facilitate the estimation of additional cost estimates and preparation of technical and financial proposals to insert the test of legality under the VPA SVL during the pilot phase
  • to ensure permanent liaison with the Department of Forests / MINFOF during the mission.

LTS provided the following services:

  • research and literature review;
  • review and validation of standard operating procedures (SOP) in collaboration with MINFOF, operators of the sector and other stakeholders;
  • study of the institutional MINFOF and its decentralized services [as far as possible not only in the pilot area];
  • study of forest control system [as far as possible not only in the pilot area];
    study of the stakeholders in the implementation of pilot system [as far as possible not only in the pilot area];
  • definition of legality tests to perform in accordance with the VPA SVL;
  • proposal to insert those tests during the pilot phase.

The outputs were:

  • a full mission report, including a list of documents collected as part of the mission, and contact list of people met
  • a report prepared in collaboration with MINFOF for field missions
  • the results of studies reviewed and validated by the SOPs
  • a financial proposal and timetable for implementing the tests of legality in the pilot area (submitted by the Consortium).

Lessons Learned from Support to Civil Society Organisations

Through its Civil Society Support Scheme, Norway’s International Climate and Forest Initiative has provided grants to over 40 civil society and research institutions to implement projects related to Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+) in developing countries. Projects range from primary research into technical aspects of REDD+, to policy advocacy and work on safeguards, to capacity building and REDD+ demonstrations. The principle purpose of the evaluation was to determine whether the NICFI investment of over 650 million Norwegian kroner in support to civil society was on target to help the Initiative reach its overall climate and development goals. The assignment involved the development of a Theory-Based Evaluation approach, Evaluation Framework, Survey Instruments and field work Indonesia, DRC, Cameroon, Peru and the USA.

The evaluation team found that projects were contributing to the development of an enabling environment for REDD+, were contributing to the development of national REDD+ strategies with a strong focus on social safeguards and the rights of Indigenous Peoples. In addition, projects were generating useful new knowledge and supporting local partners to become strong REDD+ actors in their own right. The team recommended ways in which reporting systems and knowledge management processes might be improved. The NICFI management team rapidly adopted the principle recommendations of the evaluation and have initiated discussions on how best to address these issues with a view to improving internal systems and better capturing new knowledge generated by the projects. Contact Philippa Lincoln for further details. 

Read the final report here:



Voluntary Partnership Agreement – Legality Assurance Systems and European Union Green Public Procurement

The 2003 EU FLEGT Action Plan aimed at tackling illegal logging and the trade in associated products, recognising the EU as a consumer of timber from regions where levels of illegality and poor governance in the forest sector are serious. A cornerstone of this Plan is the negotiation and implementation of Voluntary Partnership Agreements (VPA): bilateral agreements between the EU and timber product exporting partner countries to trade only in legal wood. The VPA contains a Legality Assurance System (LAS), a mechanism that allows a FLEGT partner country to verify that timber produced has complied with all prescribed regulations. A LAS is based on the national legislation stipulating the economic, environmental and social regulatory framework for forest management, processing of timber and trade in timber products.

The objective of this assignment was to assess the extent to which the first FLEGT VPA and Legality Assurance System (LAS) designs (in Ghana, Cameroon, R.O. Congo and Indonesia) would, when implemented, meet the requirements of existing and planned EU Member State procurement policies for relevant product groups, and further outline the relationship of LAS and procurement policies in general.

Studying these first cases provided further understanding on the overall fit between the VPA and its associated LAS and the policies in the EU guiding the procurement of timber.

Evaluation of National Forest Monitoring and Assessment Programme & Country Projects

The importance of forestry related data and information at the national level is increasingly critical to decision making, sustainable forest management; reducing GHG emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries (REDD); land use planning policies and national socio-economic development. FAO’s National Forest Monitoring and Assessment (NFMA) Programme was established in 2000 in recognition that developing countries lacked institutionalised systems of national forest inventory and monitoring and currently works in 50 countries.

LTS undertook an evaluation in accordance with OECD criteria and assessed the utility and impact of the programme and, based on lessons learned, identified obstacles and opportunities for the future and made recommendations on how the NFMA Programme should develop for maximising its effects and adapting to new and evolving needs at national and international levels such as IPCC requirements for monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) under REDD regimes. The programme involved country evaluations of Cameroon, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Philippines and Zambia.