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Career In Forestry

Forestry is the science and craft of creating, managing, using, conserving, and repairing forests, woodlands, and associated resources for human and environmental benefits.Forestry is practiced in plantations and natural stands. The science of forestry has elements that belong to the biological, physical, social, political and managerial sciences.

Modern forestry generally embraces a broad range of concerns, in what is known as multiple-use management, including:

 The provision of timber

 Fuel wood

 Landscape and community protection

 Employment

 Aesthetically appealing landscapes

Biodiversity management

 Preserving forests as "sinks" for atmospheric carbon dioxide

A practitioner of forestry is known as a forester. Other common terms are: a verderer, or a silviculturalist. Silviculture is narrower than forestry, being concerned only with forest plants, but is often used synonymously with forestry.

Forest ecosystems have come to be seen as the most important component of the biosphere, and forestry has emerged as a vital applied science, craft, and technology.

Forestry is an important economic segment in various industrial countries.For example, in Germany, forests cover nearly a third of the land area, wood is the most important renewable resource, and forestry supports more than a million jobs and about €181 billion of value to the German economy each year.


The preindustrial age has been dubbed by Werner Sombart and others as the 'wooden age', as timber and firewood were the basic resources for energy, construction and housing. The development of modern forestry is closely connected with the rise of capitalism, economy as a science and varying notions of land use and property.

Roman Latifundiae, large agricultural estates, were quite successful in maintaining the large supply of wood that was necessary for the Roman Empire.[9] Large deforestations came with respectively after the decline of the Romans.[9] However already in the 5th century, monks in the then Byzantine Romagna on the Adriatic coast, were able to establish stone pine plantations to provide fuelwood and food. This was the beginning of the massive forest mentioned by Dante Alighieri in his 1308 poem Divine Comedy.

Similar sustainable formal forestry practices were developed by the Visigoths in the 7th century when, faced with the ever-increasing shortage of wood, they instituted a code concerned with the preservation of oak and pine forests.[10] The use and management of many forest resources has a long history in China as well, dating back to the Han dynasty and taking place under the landowning gentry. A similar approach was used in Japan. It was also later written about by the Ming dynasty Chinese scholar Xu Guangqi (1562–1633).

In Europe, land usage rights in medieval and early modern times allowed different users to access forests and pastures. Plant litter and resin extraction were important, as pitch (resin) was essential for the caulking of ships, falking and hunting rights, firewood and building, timber gathering in wood pastures, and for grazing animals in forests. The notion of "commons" (German "Allmende") refers to the underlying traditional legal term of common land. The idea of enclosed private property came about during modern times. However, most hunting rights were retained by members of the nobility which preserved the right of the nobility to access and use common land for recreation, like fox hunting.

Systematic management of forests for a sustainable yield of timber began in Portugal in the 13th century when Afonso III of Portugal planted the Pinhal do Rei near Leiria to prevent coastal erosion and soil degradation, and as a sustainable source for timber used in naval construction. His successor Dom Dinis continued the practice and the forest exists still today.

Forest management also flourished in the German states in the 14th century, e.g. in Nuremberg, and in 16th-century Japan. Typically, a forest was divided into specific sections and mapped; the harvest of timber was planned with an eye to regeneration. As timber rafting allowed for connecting large continental forests, as in south western Germany, via Main, Neckar, Danube and Rhine with the coastal cities and states, early modern forestry and remote trading were closely connected. Large firs in the black forest were called „Holländer“, as they were traded to the Dutch ship yards. Large timber rafts on the Rhine were 200 to 400m in length, 40m in width and consisted of several thousand logs. The crew consisted of 400 to 500 men, including shelter, bakeries, ovens and livestock stables.Timber rafting infrastructure allowed for large interconnected networks all over continental Europe and is still of importance in Finland.

Starting with the 16th century, enhanced world maritime trade, a boom in housing construction in Europe, and the success and further Berggeschrey (rushes) of the mining industry increased timber consumption sharply. The notion of 'Nachhaltigkeit', sustainability in forestry, is closely connected to the work of Hans Carl von Carlowitz (1645–1714), a mining administrator in Saxony. His book Sylvicultura oeconomica, oder haußwirthliche Nachricht und Naturmäßige Anweisung zur wilden Baum-Zucht (1713) was the first comprehensive treatise about sustainable yield forestry.In the UK, and, to an extent, in continental Europe, the enclosure movement and the clearances favored strictly enclosed private property.[17] The Agrarian reformers, early economic writers and scientists tried to get rid of the traditional commons.[18] At the time, an alleged tragedy of the commons together with fears of a Holznot, an imminent wood shortage played a watershed role in the controversies about cooperative land use patterns.

The practice of establishing tree plantations in the British Isles was promoted by John Evelyn, though it had already acquired some popularity. Louis XIV's minister Jean-Baptiste Colbert's oak Forest of Tronçais, planted for the future use of the French Navy, matured as expected in the mid-19th century: "Colbert had thought of everything except the steamship," Fernand Braudel observed. In parallel, schools of forestry were established beginning in the late 18th century in Hesse, Russia, Austria-Hungary, Sweden, France and elsewhere in Europe.

Forest conservation and early globalization

Further information: forest conservation

During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, forest preservation programs were established in British India, the United States, and Europe. Many foresters were either from continental Europe (like Sir Dietrich Brandis), or educated there (like Gifford Pinchot). Sir Dietrich Brandis is considered the father of tropical forestry, European concepts and practices had to be adapted in tropical and semi-arid climate zones. The development of plantation forestry was one of the (controversial) answers to the specific challenges in the tropical colonies. The enactment and evolution of forest laws and binding regulations occurred in most Western nations in the 20th century in response to growing conservation concerns and the increasing technological capacity of logging companies. Tropical forestry is a separate branch of forestry which deals mainly with equatorial forests that yield woods such as teak and mahogany.


Forestry mechanization was always in close connection to metal working and the development of mechanical tools to cut and transport timber to its destination. Rafting belongs to the earliest means of transport. Steel saws came up in the 15th century. The 19th century widely increased the availability of steel for whipsaws and introduced Forest railways and railways in general for transport and as forestry customer. Further human induced changes, however, came since World War II, respectively in line with the "1950s syndrome".The first portable chainsaw was invented in 1918 in Canada, but large impact of mechanization in forestry started after World War II. Forestry harvesters are among the most recent developments. Although drones, planes, laser scanning, satellites and robots also play a part in forestry.

Today a strong body of research exists regarding the management of forest ecosystems and the genetic improvement of tree species and varieties. Forestry studies also include the development of better methods for the planting, protecting, thinning, controlled burning, felling, extracting, and processing of timber. One of the applications of modern forestry is reforestation, in which trees are planted and tended in a given area.

Trees provide numerous environmental, social and economic benefits for people.[ In many regions, the forest industry is of major ecological, economic, and social importance, with the United States producing more timber than any other country in the world. Third-party certification systems that provide independent verification of sound forest stewardship and sustainable forestry have become commonplace in many areas since the 1990s. These certification systems developed as a response to criticism of some forestry practices, particularly deforestation in less-developed regions along with concerns over resource management in the developed world.

In topographically severe forested terrain, proper forestry is important for the prevention or minimization of serious soil erosion or even landslides. In areas with a high potential for landslides, forests can stabilize soils and prevent property damage or loss, human injury, or loss of life.

List of preferable institutions

There are several forest research institutes in India offering various research courses and projects. One of the most popular forest research institutes in the country is located at Dehradun in Uttrakhand. Forest Research Institution Dehradun is regarded as one of the oldest in the respective field in India and is managed by the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE).

The forest research institutes in India are broadly classified into three categories which are - Institutes under India's Ministry of Environment and Forests, Institutes under the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education and Institutes Under state governments. There are various forest research projects and courses such as Environment Management, Forestry Management, Wood Science Technology, and others offered by forest research institutions in India.

A lot of career opportunities are available in the field of forestry and its related field. From working in zoological parks to wildlife ranges to owning plantations to working in wildlife research institutes, there is a lot that can do while making a career in forestry. Aspirants can also find relevant job opportunities in Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE) and its affiliated institutes, wildlife department, forest department, national parks & sanctuaries, forest nurseries.

Here is the list of some important Forest Research Institutes in India as per their categories.

Forest Research Institutes under India's Ministry of Environment and Forests

Some forest research institutes in the country are managed by the Ministry of Environment and Forests. The forest research institutes that fall under the Ministry of Environment and Forests mainly focus on planning, promoting, coordinating, and implementing environmental and forestry programmes across the country

Forest Research Institute Name


Courses/Research Opportunities

Dehradun, Uttrakhand

 Masters in Wildlife Science

 Certificate Course in Wildlife Management

 Postgraduate Diploma Course in Advanced Wildlife Management

Govind Ballabh Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment & Development, Almora

Almora, Uttrakhand

 Research - Centre for Land and Water Resource Management

 Research - Centre for Socio-Economic Development

 Research- Centre for Biodiversity Conservation and Management

Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh

 Post Graduate Diploma in Sustainability Management

 Post Graduate Diploma in Forest Management

 M.Phil

 Ph.D

Bangalore, Karnataka

 Research - Wood and Bio-Fibre Composites

 Research - Adhesives

 Research- Timber Identification & Wood Preservation

 Research-Solid Wood

Forest Research Institutes under State Governments

Some of the forest research institute in the country are managed by the state government. The forest department of the respective state government is responsible for managing and conducting various type of research and research projects.

Forest Research Institute Name


Courses/Research Opportunities

Kerala Forest Research Institute


 Ph.D.

Mettupalayam, Tamil Nadu

 M.Sc in Forestry

Forest Research Institute, Kanpur

Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh

 Research- Increasing productivity of Forest through Tree Improvement Programme.

 Ecology and pollution-related studies.

Forest Research Institutes under the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education

The forest research institute that falls under the category of Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education is responsible to conduct forestry research and transfer the latest technologies developed to the states of India and other user agencies. It also imparts forestry education to promote awareness and sustainable development. The headquarters of the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education is located in Dehradun.

Forest Research Institute Name


Courses/Research Opportunities

Arid Forest Research Institute, Jodhpur

Jodhpur, Jaipur

 Forest Ecology

 Forest Genetics and Tree Breeding Division

 Non-Wood Forest Products Divison

 Information Technology Cell

Centre for Forest-based Livelihoods and Extension (CFLE), Agartala

Agartala, Tripura

 To be updated

Himalayan Forest Research Institute, Shimla

Shimla, Himachal Pradesh

 Forest Ecology and Climate Change

 Forest Protection

 Genetic and Tree Improvement

 Silviculture and Forest Management

Institute of Forest Genetics and Tree Breeding, Coimbatore

Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu

 Genetic Improvement

 Planting Stock Improvement

 Productivity and nutrient cycling

 Clonal propagation

Institute of Wood Science and Technology, Bangalore

Bangalore, Karnataka

 Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D. Forestry)

Tropical Forest Research Institute, Jabalpur

Jabalpur Madhya Pradesh

 Conservation and Research Programmes

Indira Gandhi National Forest Academy, Dehradun

Dehradun, Uttrakhand

 Training Programmes

National Institute of Animal Welfare, Faridabad

Faridabad, Haryana

 To be Updated

India’s Forest Products Industry Outlook 2013

A comprehensive review and analysis of India's forest product industry and wood fiber deficit over a ten year forecast period (to 2021).

Study Highlights

 10-year historical data on imports of softwood and hardwood logs, softwood and hardwood lumber, wood panels, wood furniture, pulp, recovered fiber, printing & writing paper, newsprint, tissue, containerboard and boxboard

 Details on overseas sources of key forest products for India

 Constraints on timber availability

 Profile of plantation forestry development in India

 Analysis of India’s infrastructure limitations, and developments in ports, roads and energy production

 Comparison of India and China’s forest resources, energy and demographic trends and trade in forest products

 Profile and analysis of India’s forest products industry and market trends, including major companies

 Forecast of India’s wood fiber deficit to 2021, including forecast of imports of logs (softwood, teak and other hardwood), lumber (softwood and hardwood), wood panels and pulp and paper

Over the last ten years India’s trade deficit in forest products has soared from US$1.0 billion in 2001 to more than $5 billion in 2011. Due to the scarcity of domestic timber resources and rapidly growing demand, log imports in India have doubled since 2006 in order to meet the country’s growing appetite for wood products. India’s per capita consumption of paper and paperboard is less than 10kg (compared with 72kg/capita in China), but demand has been growing rapidly and consumption of recovered paper, wood pulp and non-wood pulp have nearly doubled over the past decade.

2013 India’s Forest Products Industry Outlook provides a unique analysis of the potential development of the world’s next substantial wood fiber import market (after China), based on domestic resource availability and the demographic and economic trends driving demand.

This study evaluates the farm forestry programs being launched in India (primarily by the paper companies), and the strategies being explored by this sector to meet increasing demand growth. The study includes 10-year historical data on India’s forest products trade, and forecasts imports of logs, lumber and pulp and paper products through 2021.

India: Imports of Paper and Paperboard by Source, January-September 2012 Percent by Volume

Which are the major suppliers of paper products to India?

It is expected that India’s growth trajectory of imports will not follow China’s explosive patterns, yet will still be one of the most important trends in global timber demand as India’s increasing need for imported wood fiber is expected to be sustained for several decades. This study explores the similarities and differences between the economic development and forest industry evolution of India and China over the last five years.

2013 India’s Forest Products Industry Outlook is an essential tool for understanding the path of development of India’s forest industry, and the outlook for investment and imports of wood products, pulp, and paper.

India’s Working-Age Population Will Close Gap With China’s

UN Medium-Variant Population Projection of Persons Aged 15-64, Millions

By 2030, India’s working age population will be 8% larger than China’s

Table of Contents

I. Executive Summary

II. Macroeconomic Outlook for India

III. India: The “Next China”?

 Demographic and economic profiles

 Energy, infrastructure and housing

 Forest resources

 Forest products trade and timber supply deficits

IV. Forest Resources

 Introduction: Forests and “Trees Outside Forest”

 National Forest Inventory

 Forest cover, growing stock and species mix

 Key species: eucalyptus, poplar, teak, bamboo, other fast-growing hardwood

 Government programs to stimulate tree planting

 Farm Forestry Programs by private companies

 Illegal logging and certification

 Timber harvest potential

V. Forest Products Production

 Wood Products

o i. lumber

o ii. Wood Panels

o iii. Furniture

 Pulp and Paper

o i. Raw materials: Recovered paper, wood pulp and non-wood pulp

o ii. Paper: newsprint, printing & writing and tissue

o iii. Paperboard: Containerboard and boxboard

VI. Forest Products Trade

 Overview of forest products imports and exports

 Import duties in India

 Wood products

o i. Softwood logs and lumber

o ii. Hardwood logs and lumber, focus on teak

o iii. Wood panels: veneer, plywood, MDF and particleboard

o iv. Secondary wood products and furniture

 Pulp and paper

o i. Woodchips and recovered paper

o ii. Wood pulp

o iii. Paper and paperboard

o iv. Wood fiber deficit

VII. Outlook for Forest Products Supply and Demand

ood log and lumber imports to 2021

 Forecast of teak and other hardwood log imports to 2021

 Forecast of Paper and Paperboard production and imports to 2021

 Fiber furnish forecast to 2021

o i. Recovered paper

o ii. Wood pulp

o iii. Non-wood pulp

 Forecast of India’s wood fiber deficit, 2012-2021

VIII. Appendix I. Tables

IX. Appendix II. Profile of company Farm Forestry Programs

Frequently Asked questions

Why is Forest future resource for India?

This video highlights the USAID Partnership for Land Use Science (Forest-PLUS) Program which operated between 2012-2017. Forest-PLUS was designed to help India reduce deforestation and forest degradation through the development of innovative, locally appropriate tools and approaches for improved ecosystem management of forested landscapes. India has 300 million people directly dependent on forest resources for their livelihoods and many more people indirectly dependent on ecosystem services. In this context, Forest-PLUS gave equal weight to tools and approaches that safeguard and enhance the biodiversity, environmental, livelihood, and social co-benefits of forest management.

Is forest cover increasing or decreasing in India?

 The India State of Forest Report 2019 released recently shows an increase of 5,188 square kilometres of forest and tree cover across the country compared to the ISFR 2017.

 However, the report highlights that northeast India continues to lose forests when compared to ISFR 2017 and previous reports.

 The forest report also reveals that the forest area under the category “recorded forest area” (land notified as forest by the government) in tribal districts, which are home to about 60 percent of India’s forests, is decreasing as well.

 The report for the first time did an assessment of biodiversity for all states and union territories and found that Arunachal Pradesh has the maximum richness of species in terms of trees, shrubs and herbs followed by Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

Nearly 25 percent (one fourth) of India’s total land area is now under forest and tree cover. However, there is still a long way to go – more than a decade, admits the government – before India reaches its target of having 33 percent of its total area under forest and tree cover. The latest ‘India State of Forest Report (ISFR 2019) released by the country’s environment minister Prakash Javadekar on December 30, 2019, revealed that the total forest and tree cover of the country is 807,276 square kilometres (which is 24.56 percent of the geographical area of the country) compared to 802,088 sq km (24.39 percent) in ISFR 2017. The report marked an increase of 5,188 sq. km. of forest and tree cover combined, at the national level, as compared to the previous assessment. When the last assessment, ISFR 2017, was released, an increase of 8,021 sq. km. was recorded compared to the data in ISFR 2015.

While the overall forest and tree cover marked an increase on a national level, the report highlighted a decrease in the forest area in the country’s northeast region. This decline in forest area in the northeast has been an ongoing trend with the region witnessing a loss of about 3,199 sq. km. of forest area sine 2009.

ISFR 2019 is a biennial report published by the Forest Survey of India (FSI) and is the 16th such report published. The calculations are largely based on satellite data. It includes information on forest cover, tree cover, mangrove cover, growing stock inside and outside the forest areas, carbon stock in India’s forests, forest types and biodiversity, forest fire monitoring and forest cover in different slopes and altitudes.

What does ‘forest cover’ include?

According to the 2019 report, the total forest cover of the country is 712,249 square kilometres (21.67 percent of India’s total geographical area) slightly up from 708,273 sq. km (21.54 percent) in 2017. The tree cover of the country is 95,027 sq. km (2.89 percent of the total area) again slightly up from 93,815 sq. km. (2.85 percent) in 2017.

As per the report, “forest cover” includes all tree patches which have canopy density more than 10 percent and area of one hectare or more in size, irrespective of their legal status and species composition. The term “Recorded Forest Area” (RFA) is used for lands which have been notified as “forest” under any government Act or rules or recorded as “forest” in the government records.

The report spotlights that forest cover within the RFA category has shown a slight decrease of 330 sq. km., whereas forest cover outside the RFA has shown an increase of 4,306 sq. km., as compared to the previous assessment of 2017.

Kanchi Kohli, who is a senior researcher with the Centre for Policy Research (CPR), said that the “logic of counting recorded forest area is misleading.”

“Most approvals for forest land diversion state that the legal status of the land will remain unchanged. This means that a dam reservoir that has submerged a forest or a steel plant will also be calculated as a recorded forest, even though no forest exists. It is important for the ISFR to look at a good forest with aspects like water security, biodiversity and livelihoods at the centre of understanding the state of forests rather than merely the canopy cover,” Kohli told Mongabay-India.

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