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Natural Disturbance Dynamics Analysis for Forest Ecosystem Management (FORDISMAN) - an EFINORD-SNS network

Short overview

Forestry is an essential component in the ecological, economical, and social structure of both the Nordic Countries and the Baltic States. Sustainable ecosystem management requires an understanding of the generative ecosystem process. These include natural disturbance processes and the responses of ecosystems to disturbances.

Our goal in forest research is to develop and promote an active network in both the study of natural disturbance regimes and in an ecosystem based approach to forest management in the Baltic region.

The main aim is to gain new knowledge in the area of natural disturbance regimes and forest ecosystem processes. An ecosystem understanding integrates physical and chemical processes with an understanding of the adaptations of individual organisms. An understanding of these ecosystem processes in a social and economic context requires both a multidisciplinary and an interdisciplinary approach. The challenge is to bring a wide range of subject matter experts together to develop a shared understanding of the ecosystem processes. The resulting understanding will lead to improved forest resource utilization and planning.

Network activity is focused on the SNS target item: environmentally friendly forest management. Traditional forest management focused on a few commodities. The resulting forests raise concerns with respect to the resilience and sustainability of the forest ecosystem. These concerns of ecosystem resilience are particularly relevant in the context of global climate change. Changing social and economic conditions further challenges traditional forest management. Society expects a broader range of forest values to be sustained. This research explores the opportunity of studying natural disturbance processes and the response of forests to disturbance to create sound management plans for our future forests.

Activities: A common understanding of the responses of forests to disturbance process will be generated through a set of focused workshops and conferences. The workshops will reflect thematic groupings that bring together researcher with overlapping interests, methods, and data. The workshops held over last years have taken place in different countries. The workshops usually include field trips which is an important part in perceiving forest realities.

Grant by Estonian Environmental Center to create permanent sample plot network is a part of activities. Work was started in 2002. The methodology was developed for field studies.