On the 27th of May 2015 a workshop on Sustainable Forest Management was held in Minsk, Belarus. The objective was to share and discuss views on the potential to increase cooperation and setting joint priorities for research needs in the field of sustainable forest management (SFM) in EU, Russia and the Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries.
The workshop was organized by the European Forest Institute (EFI), together with the Polish Forest Research Institute (IBL). For the first time, during the last decade it brought together scientists and scientific managers from Russia, and all six Eastern Partnership countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine, and the EU, to discuss transnational forest research cooperation at the Pan- European level.
During the first panel discussion “Joint forest research priorities and challenges in EU, Russia and EaP countries” representatives of all countries were invited to characterize the current forest research priorities and challenges and identify joint priorities for research. In spite of significant differences in the status, support and financing of forest research, similar topics for future research were identified, from being quite traditional like “forest monitoring and inventory” and “silviculture” to quite new like “forest and climate change”, “risk management”, “bioeconomy and bioenergy”.
The second panel discussion was devoted to forest research support and financial mechanisms used in EU and partner countries. The panel discussion aimed at “Identifying financial mechanisms used for forest research support in EaP countries and to be used for joint calls for proposals”. It is an important step forward, because the workshop results will be used as background work for a possible later joint Call for proposals targeted at EU and Russia/EaP on related to SFM research.