Global Strategy & Governance Structure

The strategy takes pride in FSC’s multi-stakeholder governance system and the global network of partners. It identifies FSC’s core strength of being a community for co-creation: we convene members and other partners from diverse interests to set global benchmarks for forest stewardship and deliver significant results for the forests and the people who depend on them.


FSC For members
FSC AC / Geoff Howe
FSC GLOBAL STRATEGY 2021-2026 (English version)
PDF, Size: 7.25MB

Global Strategy 2021-2026

The FSC Global Strategy 2021-2026 was approved by the FSC International Board of Directors in their 86th meeting on 16-20 November 2020. The new strategy sets the direction and the intended outcomes for FSC until 2026 as agreed by the board after a two-year-long process.

The process to develop the FSC Global Strategy (2021–2026) was led by the FSC International Board of Directors, including two rounds of public consultation and virtual dialogues with the FSC Membership and global staff of FSC, including network partners.


The FSC Statutes are the documents that govern the organization and the foundation on which it was formed. 

They are updated every three years, through a motion proposed by members at the General Assembly, or if an amendment is required between assemblies, this can be proposed by members through a postal vote.  

  • FSC GA

    Via the General Assembly

    FSC International members are invited to the General Assembly. Delegates also include certification bodies, certificate holders, union representatives, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and observers – but only members can submit motions. 

    FSC members discuss and vote on motions that may fundamentally affect the way FSC is run. 

    To ensure that all voices are heard equally, each FSC chamber holds 33.3 per cent of the vote on all FSC matters. Within each chamber, votes are weighted to ensure that North and South each hold 50 per cent of the vote. 

    The FSC General Assembly 2021 will be the 9th assembly of members in the history of the organization. The eighth FSC General Assembly 2017 took place in Vancouver, Canada, from 8 to 13 October 2017. The first general assembly took place in 1996 in Oaxaca, Mexico.

    The Board of Directors are 12 individuals who are elected by, and accountable to, the members.

  • FSC Forests

    Via the FSC Board of Directors

    The FSC Board of Directors is accountable to all members. It consists of 12 elected representatives, with four elected from each of the chambers for a four-year term. 
    In 2012, the Board of Directors unanimously agreed that Kim Carstensen would be the best person to lead the organization, bringing a wealth of knowledge and experience to the role. 

  • FSC General Assembly
    FSC AC / Geoff Howe

    Via FSC Policy and Standards Committee

    The FSC Policy and Standards Committee acts on behalf of the BoD with respect to technical matters related to the development or revision of FSC Policies, Standards, Procedures and other normative documents, by providing technical reviews and recommendations for their approval. The PSC consists of 6 FSC members, one from each of the 6 FSC sub-chambers, selected by the BoD based on an application process open to all FSC members.

  • Kim Carstensen

    Via the Director General

    Kim Carstensen is the Director General of the Forest Stewardship Council, a position he has held since October 2012. He was selected to succeed Andre de Freitas with the unanimous support of the FSC Board of Directors, who recognised that Mr. Carstensen’s proven track record as a global leader within the environment and development sectors make him extremely well-suited to consolidate FSC’s position as a global leader in responsible forest certification. 

    Prior to joining FSC, Mr. Carstensen managed FairGreenSolutions, an environmental strategy and sustainable development consultancy that, among other things, helped link the concepts of ‘green economy’ and sustainable development for clients in the global South. 

    His strategic approach to environment and development issues comes from a long history of global leadership at WWF, most recently as the leader of WWF International’s Global Climate Initiative, where he led the organisation’s development of nationally relevant and climate change programmes in the world’s key economies and its push for global climate action across governments and businesses. 

    Prior to this he was the CEO of WWF Denmark, where he worked on issues related to global environment and development policy, and to environment and development projects in the global South. 

    Mr. Carstensen’s broad development experience also comes from his prior role as Deputy Chairman of the Board of Danida (Denmark’s Official Development Assistance Agency), where he participated in broad discussions of development issues in all sectors, and from his academic training as a sociologist. 

Global leadership structure

The Forest Stewardship Council International (FSC International) consists of the entities FSC Asociación Civil (FSC AC), FSC International Center GmbH (FSC IC) and FSC Global Development GmbH (FSC GD). While the latter two are located in Bonn, Germany, FSC AC is located in Oaxaca, Mexico, and is the mother organization of FSC IC and FSC GD. FSC Investments and Partnerships is associated with FSC International and located in Seattle, Washington, U.S.

FSC Leadership

Kim Carstensen, Director General

Frank Harnischfeger, Chief Operating Officer


Global Leadership Forum

Anand Punja, Chief Engagement and Partnerships Officer

André Selbach, Head of Finances

Asger Olesen, Chief Climate and Ecosystems Services Officer

Bruno Rath, Regional Director Latin America

Cindy Cheng, Regional Director Asia Pacific

Clare Coleman, Regional Director Europe

Francisco Souza, Director - FSC Indigenous Foundation

Francois Dufresne, President and CEO FSC Canada

Frank Harnischfeger, Chief Operating Officer

Gemma BoetekeesDirector Stakeholder Solutions

Guillermina GarzaFSC Membership Director

Hans Joachim Droste, Chief Policy Officer

Harrison Ochieng Kojwang, Regional Director Africa

Jeremy Harrison, Chief Markets Officer

Joanna Nowakowska, System Performance Director

Jose Tagle, Deputy Director Global Network

Kim Carstensen, Managing Director

Lieske van Santen, Global Network Director

Marc Jessel, Chief System Integrity Officer

Mark Smith, Executive Director of FSC Investments & Partnerships

Matthias Fecht, Head of Human Resources and Facility Management

Pina Gervassi, Climate and Restoration Engagement Director

Sebastian Wieschalla, Head of Legal Department

Stefan Salvador, Director Policy Operations