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Forestry research

Forestry research supports effective responses to the challenges that society faces

NRW scientist analysing plants


Threats from pests, diseases and changing weather patterns call for new and innovative insights for policy makers and practitioners. These will ensure that tomorrow’s forests remain resilient and continue to deliver economic, environmental and social benefits to society, such as a globally competitive timber and wood-processing industry, maintaining high-level biodiverse ecosystems and providing places for people to play and work.

How we source our evidence

As an evidence-based organisation, at Natural Resources Wales we seek to ensure our decisions, operations and advice to the Government and others are underpinned by sound and quality-assured evidence.

We draw on evidence from a variety of sources:

  • We undertake research ourselves
  • We commission work from others, including universities, for specific operational and advisory requirements
  • We influence the evidence work delivered by other organisations

Cross-border research agenda

Together with the Welsh Government, we work very closely with the Forestry Commission, its research agency Forest Research and the Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to ensure that Wales’s evidence requirements are included in the overall Great Britain remit.

Benefits of cross-border research

The Forestry Commission continues to deliver research and other services to Wales under a cross-border agreement. Forest Research is Great Britain’s principal organisation for forestry and tree-related research and is internationally renowned for the provision of evidence and scientific services in support of sustainable forestry. Forest Research has a number of staff based in Wales.

Working together with the other administrations in Great Britain enables a coherent and cost-effective tree and forestry research agenda to be developed.

Forestry research in Britain

Forestry research provides the sound science and robust evidence required for sustainable forest management, delivered through the UK Forestry Standard and its supporting guidance.

The Forestry Commission have recently produced a Science and Innovation Strategy for Forestry in Great Britain (March 2014).

Forestry research in Wales

Recent research undertaken in Wales includes:

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