Archive: 2023

FOREXT met in Lugo, Spain

The autumn meeting of FOREXT in 2023 took us to Lugo, Spain, where the members were hosted by one of our newer members, University of Santiago de Compostela, Silvopastoral Systems research group. The three-day gathering focused on upcoming targets we want to reach and developing the network’s internal and external communications further.

One of the main decision-making items on the agenda was the election of new chair for the network. Dr Radek Rinn, who is the Vice–dean for Strategy, Development and International Relations at the Faculty of Forestry and Wood Sciences, Czech University of Life Sciences Prague has been elected as the new network.

FOREXT in Friol, photo from USSE, https://x.com/USSE_Forest/status/1722597792089034984?s=20

The final meeting day was dedicated to a field trip, which took the participants to a communal forest in Friol (Lugo), where they grow pine trees and breeding animal to avoid forest fires and also to get extra income. There was also a visit to Bosques Naturales, which combines growing high quality timber and animal breeding.

FOREXT at ForestPaths Policy Lab

Our chair Mark Prior from Forestry Commission, UK, participated in a recent ForestPaths-project Policy Lab as part of an interdisciplinary group helping the project identify policy objectives and stakeholder needs. Being part of major EU projects as stakeholders is one of the benefits of the FOREXT network. 

On 27-29 September 2023, some 15 experts came together with project partners to support the first ForestPaths Policy Lab with the aim of beginning to develop holistic forest-based policy pathways.  The project will co-design, quantify and evaluate forest-based policy pathways to optimize climate change mitigation, adapt forests to climate change and conserve biodiversity and ecosystem services.   Looking to focus on climate and Biodiversity Smart Forestry options through ‘next generation’ forest ecosystem and management models this, and future policy labs, will help the project explore and test solutions over the next few years. 

The event included excellent interactive sessions and a good opportunity to get to know participants and share experience.  FOREXT’s participation in the Policy Lab demonstrated the benefit of having our network of forest advice organisations, as it is essential that projects such as ForestPaths, that look to the climate and biodiversity benefits associated with European forests, take fully into account the needs and situation of the forest owners themselves, who at the end of the day have our forests in their hands.   

FOREXT coordinator at EFI changes

Meet the new FOREXT coordinator at EFI: Inazio Martinez de Arano.

He has more than 15 years of research experience, mainly in forest soil sustainability. Before joining EFI and working as the Head of EFI’s Mediterranean Facility, EFIMED, he served as coordinator of forestry research at NEIKER-TECNALIA in Spain (2004-2007) and as CEO of USSE (2008-2013). In these roles he has developed a deep understanding of the actors, institutions and processes involved in the policy making and, also, of the languages, views, needs and idiosyncrasy of different stakeholder groups. He has worked in policy-science initiatives both from the science and the stakeholder points of view. He has extensive working experience in European Projects (SIMRA, ROSEWOOD4.0, MYSUSTAINABLEFOREST, FORESTERRA, BEWATER, INCREDIBLE etc.). He currently coordinates the Bioregions Facility at EFI, and participates in several EU projects.

Our warm thanks to Nataša Lovrić who worked with the network from the very beginning, and has provided excellent and enthusiastic support in setting up and developing FOREXT.

FOREXT welcomes new members!

The following organisations are welcomed as full members of the FOREXT network:

  • University of Forestry, Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Basilicon Consulting, Hungary
  • Agricultural Advisory Service, Forestry Service Office (LAAS), Lithuania
  • Faculty of Forestry and Wood Technology, Poznan University of Life Sciences, Poland
  • Landesbetrieb Wald und Holz NRW, Germany
  • Société Royale Forestière de Belgique – Royal Forestry Society of Belgium
  • University of Santiago de Compostela, Lugo, Spain

The network met in Prague on 10-11 May 2023, with a field trip on 12 May. During the meeting, forthcoming project proposals were discussed, among other issues related to ongoing activities.

Our warm thanks to Faculty of Forestry and Wood Sciences, Czech University of Life Sciences Prague for hosting us.

Next FOREXT meeting will be held in October 2023 in Lugo, Spain, and will be hosted by the University of Santiago de Compostela.

FOREXT at Holisoils annual meeting

FOREXT was present at the HoliSoils annual meeting as part of the project’s Stakeholders and End-user Advisory Board. During a panel discussion, the participants explored which results are relevant for stakeholders, where they use the results, how these results are best provided and why they are important. Our Chair Mark Prior concludes that understanding our soils better is very import for the future of European forest management.

HoliSoils – Holistic management practices, modelling and monitoring for European forest soils – is a Horizon 2020 project (May 2021- October 2025) to develop a harmonised soil monitoring framework. It identifies and tests soil management practices aiming to mitigate climate change and sustain provision of various ecosystem services essential for human livelihoods and wellbeing.

Photo from Holisoils project meeting.
Photo from HoliSoils Twitter account, https://twitter.com/holisoils/status/1648608128538144773?s=20

March 2023 FOREXT Friday recording now available.

Our March 2023 FOREXT Friday focused on My pages (Mina sidor), which is a a website with free e-services that the Swedish Forest Agency offer forest owners. The target user group are private forest owners with 1-10 properties who don’t have access to their own geodata systems. The site aims to in a simple and efficient way, inspire and empower forest owners to make informed decisions about their forest property. The service provides maps, possibility to report or apply for permission of clear felling and a compilation of information from different government agencies.

Watch the recording of the presentation by Lisa Wik Persson as well as the discussion afterwards.

Meet the members: Czech University of Life Sciences Prague

As our next meeting will be hosted by the Faculty of Forestry and Wood Sciences,
Czech University of Life Sciences Prague, let’s have a brief look at what they do. They provide a comprehensive forestry education system to encourage and support rational forest management and sustainable utilization of its huge natural resources. In addition, with their research activities they have become a respected international research centre. More on their website: https://www.fld.czu.cz/en

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