The study provides insight into the future of the forest-based bioeconomy sector in selected Southeast European (SEE) countries. It elicits experts’ understanding of forest-based bioeconomy, their opinion and level of agreement on future implementation of the bioeconomy concept by 2030/2050, through two-round Delphi. The study also provides the state-of-the-art of the bioeconomy related policies in selected countries for the readers’ better understanding of the context among other. Results showed that (i) instead of explicit national and regional bioeconomy strategies, Serbia, Croatia and North Macedonia have bundle of bioeconomy related documents, across diverse forest-related sectors, which directly or indirectly address bioeconomy concept; (ii) the forest-based bioeconomy concept is seen as observable; there are expected future changes in the forest sector by expansion of the current forest-based sector to added-value products/applications; (iii) forest ownership isn’t expected to change from small-scale to large scale ownership, followed by crucial role of policy changes, for further fostering a forest-based bioeconomy concept, and for raising awareness among forestry professionals; (iv) by 2030 the need for cross-sectoral cooperation will increase, which will initiate approach change in forestry professionals, and increase demand for woody biomass; (v) by 2050 forest-based value chains and business models will become more diverse. Bigger changes are expected by 2050. Study contributes to better understanding of SEE and national contexts for implementation of the forest-based bioeconomy. Further priorities setting through regional and/or national forest-based bioeconomy strategic documents could support its implementation.
Nataša Lovrić, Silvija Krajter Ostoić, Dijana Vuletić, Mirjana Zavodja, Ilija Đorđević, Vladimir Stojanovski, Marta Curman,The future of the forest-based bioeconomy in selected southeast European countries, Futures, Volume 128, 2021,102725,ISSN 0016-3287, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2021.102725.