The idea of GPS supported community-based forest monitoring and forest crime prevention was born during a scientific green criminology project in Brazil (2010-2016), funded by the Dutch NWO-WOTRO Science for Global Development Program. It was set up in collaboration with Brazilian universities and NGOs to identify and reduce social and environmental harm, including crime. The development strategy focused on access to justice and improving the rule of law.

In 2014, we first equipped various traditional communities that live near deforestation hotspots with water proof GPS cameras, solar chargers and power bank. It allows them to take pictures of illegal forest activities.

The activities of Forest Forces are possible thanks to funding by a crowd; initially by alumni from Utrecht University, followed by donations from people from different countries – so far, mainly Brazil and The Netherlands.

Forest Forces has existed as an informal network since 2014. In 2018 Forest Forces became an official entity: Forest Forces is registered as a Foundation in Amsterdam, The Netherlands (Stichting Forest Forces).


Tim Boekhout van Solinge MA PhD, is a criminologist, researcher, lecturer, consultant and expert in forest & wildlife crime, illegal markets, and rule of law. He is a research fellow at Department of Criminology, Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam. 

In 2016, Tim dedicated himself mainly to the preservation of tropical rainforest, amongst others by expanding the system of local forest monitoring with GPS cameras which he started in 2014.

Team and Members of the Board

  • Odair “Dadá” Borari
  • Tim Boekhout van Solinge (director)
  • Tim Manschot
  • Marieke Nijmanting
  • Maarten Robben
  • Caya van der Sluis

Academic Council


  • Interpol
  • Brazil’s Ministerio Publico (Public Prosecutor’s Office)
  • Pastoral Land Commission (CPT)
  • Kadaster International
  • Terra de Direitos