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IUFRO The Advocate for Forest Science.
The role of forests and forestry has changed in the last decades. Forests are no longer seen simply as a source for timber supply, but rather as ecosystems that sustain livelihoods and provide a range of products and environmental services. Additionally challenges like market globalization and global environmental problems encounter forests and demand new requirements for sustainable forest management. Moreover the economic dimension of forestry providing societies with the renewable raw material timber has proven to become more and more important during the past years. The resulting tensions at the different political levels need to be regulated by forest policy processes. The research of Division 9 Forest Policy and Economics investigates in elements and the function of this social dimension of forests. Different research areas are equally important to considerably improve the knowledge on drivers and consequences of change of the social dimension of forests, such as the historical perspective, the economic and political analysis or the regulative dimension. Areas like management, information and communication support the strong relation to the needs and opportunities of the forest sector in regards to the social dimension.