5.15.00 - Forest products culture



Coming up on International Day of Forests!

Diversity of Wood in Culture: 2024 Online World Wood Day Symposium and The Sixth IUFRO Forest Products Culture Colloquium
online; 21-22 March 2024
Units involved: 5.00.00, 5.15.00, 9.03.02

This symposium is co-organized by the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU), International Association of Wood Anatomists (IAWA), International Academy of Wood Science (IAWS), International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) Division 5 (Forest Products) including IUFRO Research Group 5.15.00 (Forest Products Culture), IUFRO Working Party 9.03.02 (Forest Culture) of Division 9 (Forest Policy and Economics) as well as the Estonian State Forest Management Centre (RMK), and with the support of International Research Group on Wood Protection (IRGWP) and Japan Wood Research Society (JWRS). 


  1. Historical Utilization and Trade and Cultural Values of Wood and Non-Wood Forest Products
  2. Construction and Buildings Including Wood Durability and Protection Needs
  3. Movable Building Components, Furniture, Musical Instruments, Artifacts and Design
  4. Education in Understanding Forest Products Culture and the Challenge of Climate Change
  5. Protection and Conservation of Historical Wooden Properties including Related Forest Management, Craftsmanship, Traditional Wood Processing and Wood Working Experiences
  6. Wood Products and Wood Biotechnology (IAWS Special Session)

Details:  http://www.worldwoodday.org/2024/regions_event/39

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Howard N. Rosen, United States


Michael Grabner, Austria

Ping Yang, Japan

About Unit

Forest products culture is an integral part of IUFRO since it concerns the foundations of how people learn about and use forest products.  We have formed two Working Parties:  1) Wood Culture and 2) Non-Wood Forest Products Culture.

Research in forest products culture improves people's relationship with nature and opens new ways to understand forest products from economic, environmental, sustainability, cultural and socialogical perspectives.  It includes but is not limited to history, policy management, sociology, economics, philosophy, culture, religion, art and education.

Forest Products Culture plans to have research papers submitted to IUFRO Division 5 and World Congress Meetings and to develop a network of people interested in forest products culture.

The objective of this unit is to provide a interdisciplinary forum for the exchange of ideas related to the foundation, application, and practices of forest products culture and to provide applicable approaches to both research and everyday life.

Forest Products Culture will be linked to 9.03.02 Forest Culture and 5.11.00 Non-wood Forest Products.

State of Knowledge

Historically, people have used the forest for all aspects of living including food, shelter, health, energy, and everyday products.  Although trees in the forest provide wood products; these same trees can provide secondary products such as leaves, fruits, nuts, extractives, and sap.  Smaller plants, fungi, and fish and game from the forest are also important forest products. 

Research areas emphasized by the Forest Products Culture Research Group, where some knowledge is already available:

  • The historical and contemporary use of forest products in different regions or countries in the world
  • The culture of forest products in different societies as part of religion, literature, philosophy, and art
  • The advancement in the use and culture of forest products in all societies and at all levels of education
  • The education and promotion of the positive aspects of forest products

Knowledge gaps:

  • The impacts of modern technology and the application of traditional knowledge on the use of forest products
  • The perception of forest products compared to other materials such as plastics, metals, and concrete and food products.
  • How knowledge about forest products is transfered in different societies
  • The global recognition of innovations in wood and non-wood forest products