Provisioning and sustainable wood use: professional associations and researchers in dialogue

In March, experts working in the Swiss forestry and timber industry were for the first time offered an insight into the research projects devoted to provisioning and sustainable wood use. In return, the researchers received valuable input and feedback. The event was a success although some questions of the practitioners remained unanswered.

On 11 March 2015, the researchers of the dialogue platform "Provisioning and sustainable use of wood" of NRP 66 invited to Olten around twenty experts from the practical realm, mainly representatives of professional associations, and a small number of civil servants. At the event with the provocative title "NRP 66 - is research barking up the wrong tree?", participants discussed the preliminary results in view of the challenges faced by the Swiss forestry and timber industry. They reached the conclusion that, while the four research projects may offer interesting and relevant answers (including some tools and recommendations), they are not likely to solve the industry's biggest problems. The professional associations stated that models and theoretical scenarios could not replace a sufficiently detailed analysis of the status quo. Such analyses would require more time and funds than was available to the researchers; for this reason, they focused on specific case studies and regions. Despite these differences, researchers and practitioners value the exchanges between research and industry, hoping they will continue after the end of NRP 66.