Archive for the ‘IUFRO Spotlight’ Category

IUFRO Anniversary Congress Spotlight #52 – Building on tradition to plan for the future of forests

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A 3D machine vision technology developed to detect and measure tree characteristics real-time during thinning operations. (Credit: Lucas Wells, Oregon State University)

“We’re trying to avoid throwing the baby out with the bathwater,” said Dr. Jens Peter Skovsgaard of the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in Alnarp, Sweden.

He was speaking about forestry operations and research and how change can be evolutionary rather than revolutionary. Dr. Skovsgaard is coordinator of a session entitled: Forestry “Classic” for the Future, at the IUFRO 125th Anniversary Congress in Freiburg, Germany in September. Read more…

IUFRO 125th Anniversary Congress Spotlight #51 – Pooling resources to meet sub-Saharan forest challenges

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Training workshops for early and mid-career forest scientists across FORNESSA countries contribute to enhancing research competence and networking. (Photo by Michael Kleine, IUFRO)

Collaboration and cooperation are the keys to facilitating learning and making better use of research outcomes in sub-Saharan African countries facing severe forestry challenges.

That’s the philosophy behind Dr. Joseph Cobbinah’s upcoming session on the impact of forestry research on policy, livelihoods and economic development in sub-Saharan Africa. The session will take place at the IUFRO 125th Congress in Freiburg in September. Read more…

IUFRO 125th Anniversary Congress Spotlight #50 – Filling in knowledge gaps about natural disturbances and their interactions in mountain forests

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Forest fire in protection forest (Photo U. Wasem/WSL)

In mountainous terrain they are called protection forests – forests that protect human settlements and infrastructure against natural disturbances such as rockfall, snow avalanche and shallow landslides.

Natural disturbances are becoming more and more important drivers in many mountain chains worldwide, mainly because of past land-use legacies. But also, under climate change, the incidence of some natural disturbances is increasing.

These disturbances and their interactions can threaten human life and property and can compromise the protection function of mountain forests. Read more…

IUFRO 125th Anniversary Congress Spotlight #48 – Forest tourism can mean billions in economic benefits

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Tourism and recreation should receive just as much thought, science, and funding as other forest uses. (Photo Pixabay)

Dr. Taylor Stein of the University of Florida in Gainesville believes “that any meeting that addresses the management of the world’s forests is incomplete without a focused discussion on tourism.”

While there is limited research on the impact of nature-based tourism, Dr. Stein pointed to a 2007 report from the Center for Responsible Travel that said nature-based tourism accounted for 7% of the international tourism market and had a $77 billion impact on the world’s economy.

And, he added, surveys of travelers around the world consistently show that natural attractions (e.g. wildlife) are important reasons for their visits and they value conservation and protection of environmental quality.

Read more…

IUFRO 125th Anniversary Congress Spotlight #47 – Remote forest-dependent communities can benefit through social innovation

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The village of Iza in Transcarpathian Ukraine is famous far beyond the region’s borders for its wicker products. Most villagers are involved in the business.
http://ukurier.gov.ua/uk/articles/selo-iza-na-zakarpatti-postachaye-virobi-z-verbi-d/

Many rural forest-dependent communities face similar challenges – lack of infrastructure, housing, and transport as well as aging populations.

When global issues such as climate change, sustainability, and energy and food security are added to the mix, the need for solutions to the challenges becomes much more pressing. Read more…

IUFRO 125th Anniversary Congress Spotlight #46 – Getting a handle on future needs of forestland owners

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Private owners control nearly 70 million hectares of forestland around the globe and account for well over 50% of the forestland in many countries in Europe and North and South America.

What does the future hold for owners of forestland? (Photo Pixabay)

These owners – many of them families, individuals and other small holders – operating within social, financial and political constraints, will largely dictate the future of the forests.

That is the underlying reason for a session at the upcoming IUFRO 125th Anniversary Congress in Freiburg, Germany in September entitled: History, Findings and Future Directions of Forest Landowner Research.

Dr. Brett Butler, of the U.S. Forest Service, is coordinating the session and says: “There are numerous individual researchers and institutions that study these private owners, but the opportunities to directly compare findings and methods across countries are limited. Read more…

IUFRO Spotlight #45 – If you’re ‘remotely’ interested in monitoring biodiversity…

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Eds: GOFC-GOLD & GEO BON. Report version UNCBD COP-13, GOFC-GOLD Land Cover Project Office, Wageningen University, The Netherlands.
ISSN: 2542-6729

There is a growing need for better information on how remote sensing data can support biodiversity monitoring in tropical forests. In response to this need a new sourcebook has been published with the aim of informing national and sub-national policy and decisions.

More than 70 authors, several of them from the IUFRO community, contributed to the sourcebook that is targeted at project managers, academic institutions, NGOs, students and researchers, among others, with a background in remote sensing. Read more…

IUFRO Spotlight #44 – Evidence linking community forest rights and improved forest condition inconclusive

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There is an assumption that there is a correlation, possibly even a direct cause and effect relationship, between the devolution of forest governance and improved forest condition.

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) was interested in testing that hypothesis to assess its impact on global climate change mitigation and adaptation.

To that end, a group of researchers at Michigan State University was tasked with reviewing, summarizing and commenting on the empirical evidence supporting that conclusion.

In their review of the literature, they found the assumption deserves, at best, a “maybe.” Read more…

IUFRO Spotlight #43: Helping forests and people adapt to changing times and climes

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The world’s forests seem beset on all sides.

Rising populations and improved incomes are increasing demands for forest products and services ranging from the traditional – food, fuel and timber – to more recently recognized needs such as biomass, bioenergy, nature conservation, recreation and health, as well as forest biodiversity conservation.

“It is a great challenge to restore forest landscape in largely deforested areas.” Photo: John Stanturf.

At the same time, those rising populations – and changing preferences, such as increased demand for meat and dairy products – lead to forests being cleared to free up land for agricultural and pasture purposes.

Add the other drivers of deforestation and forest degradation, plus increasing temperatures, rapidly altering precipitation patterns and the impacts of continuously growing carbon dioxide concentrations on forest vegetation photosynthesis; and then throw in more extreme weather events that lead to more frequent and intensified droughts and wildfires, the migration of tree pests and diseases – aided by globalization – and one has a global forest under siege. Read more…

IUFRO - The International Union of Forest Research Organizations