Forest Research

Our aims

  • To assist the Forestry Commission in achieving its high-level objectives.
  • On behalf of all three (devolved UK) administrations, to take the lead in development and promotion of sustainable forest management and to support its achievement internationally.
  • To support and enhance forestry and its role in sustainable development by providing high-quality research and development in a well-run organisation.

Our objectives

  • To inform and support forestry’s contribution to the development and delivery of the policies of the UK government and the devolved administrations.
  • To provide research, development and monitoring services relevant to UK forestry interests.
  • To transfer knowledge actively and appropriately.

How do we achieve the above

Trees have a profound influence on our lives:

  • On our environment and health
  • On our access to green space
  • On our landscapes and their biodiversity
  • As a raw material for construction, fuel and other uses
  • On livelihoods and the rural economy.

Our portfolio of research and development is therefore diverse, as it covers all of the above.  

We also provide a range of products and services to support the land management and environmental technologies sectors.

We work closely with the Forestry Commission, the EU Commission and other international organisations to ensure compliance with international agreements on the sustainable management of forests and related subjects.



Silvifuture: A network promoting novel forest species

SilviFuture aims to support forest managers to diversify the species they grow, so the sector will be more resilient and remain capable of meeting society’s future needs.

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Queen Elizabeth Forest Park

Climate Ready Forestry at Queen Elizabeth Forest Park

Queen Elizabeth Forest Park (QEFP) is the first site in the Climate Ready Forest network; a partnership between FC Scotland, Forest Research, ClimateXChange and private sector collaborators, which aims to support the forest sector in Scotland become more resilient to climate change.

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Kilmun Forest Garden

Kilmun Forest Garden

Diversification of the tree species grown in commercial forests is an important way to improve forest resilience. The suitability of alternate species can be assessed in forest gardens like Kilmun.

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Adaptation for sport on Scottish Estates

There has been a global decline in abundance of Atlantic salmon stocks in the last 30-40 years, and Scotland has suffered in the reduction of salmon returning to its rivers to spawn. This decline is probably due to a number of factors, including: river pollution, man-made obstacles to migration upstream, disease and predation by non-native species, accidental netting at sea, and the effects of climate change both in the marine and fluvial environments.

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Glentress Trial Area

Adaptive forest management at the Glentress Trial Area

Continuous Cover Forestry (CCF) is an approach to forest management that utilises several different silvicultural systems.

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