Climate change, globalization, and increased consumption of materials and energy leads to higher pressure on forest resources. The task of intensifying forestry to produce more timber, paper, and energy, while at the same time ensuring ecosystem services, such as biodiversity and recreation, is a complex one. Difficult decisions have to be made if we are to strike a balance between these demands.
Future Forests has a long-term perspective (50-100 years) and will create knowledge and tools to enable science-based decisions for the future management of our forests.
The program's approach is interdisciplinary and combines empirical research with modeling, scenario analysis, and synthesis work in order to produce excellent science and applications. The ambition is to constitute a platform where researchers from different disciplines (Forest management and planning, ecology, political science, humanities, etc), and practitioners from several sectors, can interact.
Future Forests is a joint research effort of the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences , Umeå University , and the Forestry Research Institute of Sweden .
The first period of the program (2009 - 2012) was finnished last year and Future Forests Phase II (2013-2016) has just started. It includes four programme components 1) Future silviculture, 2) Forest soils and water, 3) Climate change mitigation and adaptation, and 4) Governing competing demands on forests. It is funded by MISTRA (the Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research), the Swedish forest industry, and involved research institutions.