Find out more about the work of the Policy Support Facility
Evidence-based decision-making has become a byword for good governance. It is essential that policies which deal with complex issues like climate change are based on scientific knowledge. According to UNESCO, almost 1.3 million scientific articles were published in 2014 alone. There is clearly not a shortage of information – but what’s missing is a synthesis overview of scientific evidence in a format that is generally understandable and helpful for policy planning.
Policy-making is not a scientific process based purely on evidence. It’s much more complicated and democratic with other information and aspects like values also playing an important role. In this setting, it is crucial to enhance science- policy dialogue by transmitting and discussing science information in the context in which policy-making takes place. The European Forest Institute’s science-policy work is based on answering these demands. We provide science information and a science-policy platform to discuss pan-European, forest-related topics.
Putting science into action
Our science-policy activities bring European and global forest research to decision makers on issues that are on today’s political agenda. We also bring foresight information about emerging issues likely to be on tomorrow’s agenda.
Building better understanding of forest and bioeconomy policy issues
The major global and European challenges and opportunities of our time are related to achieving climate mitigation targets and the Sustainable Development Goals. Forests and the forest-based sector can help tackle these interconnected challenges. Forests are essential natural capital, a key pillar of the circular bioeconomy and sustainable economic growth.
Providing unbiased, science-based knowledge
EFI acts as a broker at the science-policy interface. We bring evidence-based, reliable and robust information from the scientific community and our network of 120 member organisations. We use scientific facts and expert analysis to create synthesis studies which are understandable and helpful for informing policy planning. Our work helps policymakers arrive at a balanced and well-reflected judgement.
Promoting science-policy dialogue and networking
The policy framework and research landscape are changing fast and becoming more complex. EFI’s high-level discussion forum, ThinkForest, regularly brings together policymakers, the scientific community and stakeholders to build a common understanding of the problems at hand. ThinkForest offers a space for inspiring and dynamic science-policy dialogue, building bridges on pan-European forest and bioeconomy issues. It is chaired by Janez Potočnik, former EU Commissioner for both Science and Research, and Environment.
Find out more about our policy support activities and impacts:
In 2020, an evaluation of the Trust Fund was carried out. Download the evaluation report here.
In 2017, an evaluation of the Trust Fund was carried out by an independent panel: download the evaluation document
A survey of EFI ThinkForest events, science-policy studies, and social media usage was also carried out: download the survey report
EFI's work is financed by the Trust Fund for policy support, which is supported by the Governments of Austria, Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Norway, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.