Researchers from around the world are gathering this week at the IUFRO 24th World Congress in Salt Lake City to discuss the future, and the related challenges, facing forests and forest management in the 21st century. This comes hard on the heels of the climate talks in New York in late September, where forests were high on the agenda, the CGIAR Development Dialogues, which aired synergies (and, importantly, gaps) between forestry, agriculture and other land-use sectors, and a Colloquium on Forests and Climate organised by Columbia University and CIFOR, at which leading thinkers considered how we could ‘change the future by challenging the present’.
All of these events provide a ‘sort of scientific crystal ball to give glimpses into the years ahead and discuss how to meet and adapt to coming challenges’, as Congress Spotlight 17 so eloquently put it!
The T20Q project is also a crystal ball and is asking, this time ‘non-leading’ thinkers, to add their no-less-important thoughts to the questions of where forestry’s priorities lie for research and policy.
T20Q – ‘top twenty questions for forestry and landscapes’ is a project within the broader Evidence-Based Forestry (EBF) initiative, led by CIFOR and its Partners. It follows a highly successful ‘T10Q’ project for British foresters, but this time extends the call for questions in three languages to a wider community of people involved with forestry and landscapes. It is being co-ordinated by the Sylva Foundation, a leading UK charity promoting evidence-informed forestry.
Response has been excellent so far – reaching people in more than 104 countries, and engaging many more young people and women than is usual with surveys in our field! We have received well over 3000 questions, but we would like to use the opportunity of engaging with the ‘IUFRO family’ now gathered in Salt Lake City to urge them to add their voices and to encourage people in their home institutions also to join the T20Q conversation.
The survey takes less than 30 minutes. Take part if you think:
- we need to recalibrate how forests are presented in mainstream politics
- too few people are involved in setting research and policy agendas
- we should talk about forestry in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
- ‘traditional’ forestry topics are being side-lined in the pursuit of broader linkages
Visit the CIFOR booth (numbers 1103 & 1202) in the Congress Exhibition for more information about T20Q and Evidence-Based Forestry.
We look forward to hearing your stimulating questions!
Have a wonderful conference!
Gillian Petrokofsky, University of Oxford Research Fellow & CIFOR Senior Research Associate
Gabriel Hemery, CEO, Sylva Foundation
Peter Holmgren, DG, CIFOR