IUFRO Spotlights


IUFRO Spotlight #87 - Getting everyone on board to succeed in forest landscape restoration

In many countries land degradation is severe and widespread, and restoration will be a task for many years to come. So, capacities there must be enhanced to help shape a more sustainable world.

Worldwide, according to a 2018 UNESCO publication, land degradation affects 3.2 billion people – about 40% of humanity. IUFRO, through its Special Programme for Development of Capacities (SPDC), offers a significant part of the solution to recovering degraded landscapes by emphasizing Forest Landscape Restoration (FLR).

The FLR is designed as a multi-stakeholder process that aims at regaining, improving and maintaining vital ecological functions and enhancing human wellbeing. And, other studies have shown that about 15% of degraded land worldwide is suitable for FLR.

The SPDC is headed by Dr. Michael Kleine, deputy executive director of IUFRO. Its mandate is to build capacity in the forest science community in economically disadvantaged countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America so that forest science can contribute to the enhancement of sustainable management of forest landscapes.

SPDC trains forest scientists and practitioners in FLR so they are better able to manage and deal with the complex issues involved in land management. To that end, the Programme has also developed guidance (in English/Spanish/French) for the FLR process.

The IUFRO-SPDC FLR guidelines can be found at:

The International Science Council published a link to the Spotlight and information about IUFRO on the occasion of the International Day of Forests on 21 March:


Further reading:

spotlight87-forest-landscape-restoration.pdf626 Ki