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Summary of Programme

Trees, woods and forests provide multiple benefits to society and many of these are recognised in the forestry and woodland strategies spanning the next 25-50 years. In particular, there are benefits to the environment through climate change mitigation and adaptation, air quality improvement, protecting water quality and soil health, flood mitigation and addressing the biodiversity crisis. Whilst there is much research to examine goods and benefits associated with single ecosystem services, challenges remain for assessing multiple benefits at the level of detail (including temporal and spatial scales) to enable informed decision-making.

The aim of this programme is to increase understanding of the multiple ecosystem service benefits that different types of trees, woods and forests can provide and how choices influence synergies and trade-offs at a range of spatial scales.  The programme will be delivered through the generation of new data and evidence through social and physical sciences, molecular analyses and the development of methods, models and tools to express how choices, interactions and trade-offs affect the benefits from trees, woods and forests spatially and over time.

Work Areas

WA1:  Valuing and promoting the benefits from trees, woods and forests

Generating knowledge, data and analysis to evidence, understand and value the ecosystem services from trees, woods and forests. The work will provide an assessment of benefits and how these can be expressed and promoted to achieve multiple benefits.

WA2:  Methods and tools to assess multiple benefits and trade-offs from trees, woods and forests

Developing methods and tools to assess multiple ecosystem service benefits from trees, woods and forests, and their synergies and trade-offs. This on-going research will support the Woodland Creation and Expansion programme’s work on identifying optimal areas for woodland creation and Societal benefits programme on valuing Tree/forest-based solutions for improved health and well-being.

WA3:  Management choices to achieve multiple benefits from trees, woods and forests over time and space

Developing and utilising methods and tools to demonstrate and promote how management choices affect the delivery of multiple benefits from trees, woods and forests over time and space.

Key Topics

Ecosystem services; Spatial analysis; Indicators; Scenarios

Contributing Science Groups

  • Physical Environment Research Group
  • Species, Genes & Habitat Research Group
  • Land Use and Ecosystem Services
  • Social & Economic Research Group
  • Urban Forest Research Group

Programme Manager

Darren Moseley

Work Area Co-Leads – Nadia Barsoum, Gregory Valatin, Phil Handley, Darren Moseley