Forest bioeconomy – a new scope for sustainability indicators

From Science to Policy 4, European Forest Institute

Bernhard Wolfslehner, Stefanie Linser, Helga Pülzl, Annemarie Bastrup-Birk, Andrea Camia and Marco Marchetti

European forests and the forest-based sector play a central role in a bioeconomy: they provide material (wood and non-wood), bioenergy and a wealth of other regulating and cultural ecosystem services. These demands need to be properly balanced, and many targets have to be tackled simultaneously.

In a situation with many possibilities, synergies, trade-offs and uncertainties, indicators can help to avoid unwanted impacts, and support successful and sustainable bioeconomy development. They can be used to inform policy makers, synthesize complex matters and act as tools for decision support. At present, however, there is a fragmented landscape of bioeconomy-related data and monitoring instruments.

The forest-based sector has the opportunity to take the lead in the sustainable development of the bioeconomy. It has powerful tools in place that can be adapted and further developed for application in the bioeconomy as a whole. These tools have to be state-of-the art and continuously developed: here the forest sector can be a forerunner and role model, shaping the bioeconomy debate and its monitoring and assessment.

This study provides insights into the potential use of forest-based sector indicator sets in Europe. It builds on the rich experience gained with sectoral indicator tools, and connects to aspects of policy research, operational research and sustainability science. It develops three different options or scenarios for how bioeconomy indicators can be designed in the future.

>> Download the study (pdf)

Publication date: 15 November 2016
Number of pages: 32
ISBN 978-952-5980-29-5 (print)
ISBN 978-952-5980-30-1 (online)

Science supporting policy-making

The European Forest Institute is an unbiased, science-based international organisation that provides the best forest science knowledge and information for better informed policy-making.

This newsletter is funded by EFI’s Multi-Donor Trust Fund for policy support, which is supported by the Governments of Austria, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Spain and Sweden.

(Segnalato da: Marco Marchetti)