Forest innovation workshop 2014

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Event start date
Brussels, Belgium

Inform-Prioritize-Collaborate: Cooperation of Regions on innovation in forest management, use of wood and forest-related services

The workshop was held on May 20, 2014, in the Representation of the Free State of Bavaria to the European Union, Brussels. 


Forestry and forest-based industries play a major role in the EU bio-economy policy, and the new EU Forest Strategy testifies the importance of this sector. Innovation will be crucial to maximize the benefits for society and economy. The European Innovation Partnership Agricultural Productivity and Sustainability specifically addresses this issue in its Strategic Implementation Plan and offers a framework for supporting innovation in forestry.

The workshop aimed at motivating Regions to cooperate in setting priorities for innovation in the forestry sector and to connect potential stakeholders around concrete actions which could be supported by EU funding programmes.


More than 150 participants contributed to the event that was organized by EFI, ERIAFF (European Regions for Innovation in Agriculture, Food and Forestry), CEPF (European Confederation of Forest Owners), Euromontana (European Mountain Regions Network), Eustafor (European State Forest Association), and supported by the Regions of Basque Country, Free State of Bavaria, Castilla y Lèon, Catalonia, Extremadura, North Karelia, Toscana and Veneto.

The workshop offered a comprehensive participatory approach in setting the agenda. During registration to the workshop, participants had to select relevant innovation challenges out of 10 proposals. The four most voted challenges were presented by experts at the workshop, including recommendations for innovation actions. These four selected challenges were:

Managing Impacts related to Climate Change
Supporting Wood and Biomass Mobilization
Supporting the Provision of Ecosystem Services
Improving Sustainable Forest Management Approaches and Tools

Participants voted for each challenge on the four most relevant innovation actions and discussed them on eight parallel tables during a brokerage session.

The workshop revealed an interesting diversity of regional perceptions on innovation challenges for the forestry sector in Europe. Many promising actions and approaches have been already implemented in some regions, they offer starting points for future cross-border cooperation. The main outcomes of the workshop will be disseminated to the Europen Commission services, the European Parliament, the Member States, the Regions and stakeholders of the forest-based sector.

More information

List of participants
10 proposed Innovation Challenges
Voting results on Innovation Challenges

Summary of the table discussions:

  1. Managing Impacts related to Climate Change
  2. Supporting Wood and Biomass Mobilisation
  3. Supporting the Provision of Ecosystem Services
  4. Improving Sustainable Forest Management Approaches and Tools


European Forest Institute (EFI) and Innovation in European Forestry Harald Mauser, EFI

Euromontana Irene Piria, Euromontana

The ERIAFF Network Fabio Boscaleri, Tuscany Region and ERIAFF secretariat

Innovating the forest sector through Rural Development and multi-actor approaches Silvia Dietz, European Commission DG AGRI – Unit “Research and innovation”

Forest Research in Horizon 2020 Doru-Leonard Irimie, European Commission DG RTD – Unit “Agri-Food Chain”

The EIP-AGRI Service Point: new actions and developments Koen Desimpelaere, EIP AGRI Service Point

Smart specialization for a forest-based bioeconomy: The example of North Karelia, Finland Markus Lier, METLA

Wood mobilization in Basque Country. Wood in forests: inventory and risks. Forrisk project. Alejandro Cantero, HAZI

Forest governance and innovation in the Veneto Region Lisa Causin, Regional Government of Veneto

Managing Impacts related to Climate Change Clotilde Giry and Olivier Picard, CNPF - Centre national de la propriété Forestière

Supporting Wood and Biomass Mobilization Jerónimo González, Agriculture Research Center “Finca La Orden” – CICYTEX

Supporting the Provision of Ecosystem Services Elena Gorriz, Forest Economics Department - Forest Sciences Centre Of Catalonia

Improving Sustainable Forest Management Approaches and Tools Davide Pettenella, University of Padova

The Forest-based Sector Technology Platform Johan Elvnert, Forest-based Sector Technology Platform