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    Real-life examples

    The role of forests and forestry is changing rapidly and profoundly as an expanded vision of sustainable development within planetary boundaries takes hold around the world. This opens major opportunities for the sector, but also poses significant challenges. A motivated, skilled and enabled workforce will be critical, if the forestry sector is to seize the opportunities and meet the challenges.
    In order to assist stakeholders in the forestry sector to successfully navigate the transition, UNECE, FAO and FOREST EUROPE jointly developed the Guidelines on the Promotion of Green Jobs in Forestry. The Guidelines include specific recommendations in five key areas for action. We have developed this page to further share experiences on implementation of the Guidelines, to collect concrete examples of best practices, and to attract more young people towards green jobs in the forestry sector.


    The Novel Green Forest Jobs campaign will start on the International Day of Forests (21.03.2024) and will run for some months. The main aim is to raise awareness about innovative Green Forest Jobs and spread the word about opportunities in the sector. We are targeting young mid-20s students/new graduates of both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in forestry or related fields. The campaign also addresses concerns about gender exclusivity as well as work location and conditions.

    How does the campaign work? We will share short videos on our social media channels showcasing Novel Green Forest Jobs with the hashtag #novelgreenforestjobs. You are invited to Suggest Novel Green Forest Jobs until 16th February 2024 to us (liaisonunitbonn@foresteurope.org) which we can display, share our videos, or even tag your own Novel Green Forest Job directly once the campaign is running.

    Be part of our campaign and show the world how awesome it can be to work in the forest sector!

    Area 1

    Workforce data, information, analysis, strategies for human resources development

    The following are examples of initiatives that contribute to 1. collect data on the current workforce to enable evidence-based policy and decision making, 2. make efforts at a national level to improve the availability, reliability and representativeness of data related to the social aspects of sustainable forest management, 3. make use of modelling techniques to asses future demand and supply, 4. establish and maintain consultation and dialogue mechanisms on workforce development, or 5. formulate, adopt and implement national green jobs development strategies.

    • Equal Chances in Forestry, Poland

      Forestry needs women! Despite the long-year stereotype of the forester as an exclusively male profession, we observe more and more female forestry students as well as women interested in forests and nature. As a Women in Forestry Association, we aim to integrate and support all of them, encourage professional development, share the experiences and promote female leaders in forestry. Female professionals are still in minority, especially when we look at decision-making positions. Such a situation can lead to many unfavorable phenomena. It is also depressing for women who, without the role models, do not believe in the possibility of their own professional development. The problems described above are not only Polish-specific and occur in forestry on a global scale. In Polish forestry (which are in the majority of state forests) there are no analyzes of employee participation by gender, possible wage inequalities, and the occurrence of discrimination or stereotyping. The EQUAL CHANCES IN FORESTRY project aims to fill the existing information gap and, ultimately, to develop recommendations on equal treatment.

    • Green Jobs in the Forest Sector, Germany

      The main goal is to present an overview of the state of the art of Green Jobs in the pan-European forest sector, especially for those signatory and observers countries related to the FOREST EUROPE. For this, a report is being prepared to be published in the middle of 2022.

    Area 2

    Making the workforce in traditional forestry fit for purpose

    The following are examples of initiatives that help to 1. establish and maintain fora that allow dialogue and collaboration to detect evolving needs in the labour market and identify responses in education and skill development; 2. compile relevant working conditions information required for decent work with guidance on implementation in forestry and disseminate this widely among stakeholders; 3. strengthen the information base about occupational safety and health, 4. conduct work safely by contractors for people and the environment.

    • AgroForMed, France

      AgroForMed is a non-profit association that aims to connect climate ambitions to farmers' actions by developing agroforestry in the Mediterranean. Our mission is articulated around three main pillars: (1) SCALE UP - Developing agroforestry projects in the Mediterranean. (2) SCALE OUT - Disseminating agroforestry best practices in the Mediterranean. (3) SCALE DEEP - Creating a network of actors in the Mediterranean agroforestry sector.

    • Silvflame, UK

      Silvflame Ltd advocates the movement to be more conscious about our carbon footprint and its effect on the world that we will be leaving behind for our future generations. We seek to promote and spread knowledge about creating healthier and safer environment resources through research and development of technology tending to the same goals. We have come up with a design that can contain forest fires so it will stop them from spreading. Firefighters can then concentrate on that area to extinguish the flames, vehicle protection and vital infrastructure protection homes and land.

    • The cutting edge, Austria

      The one-stop-shop Female Forestry Contractors for Women Forest owners (FCFO) is open to everyone and represents a missing link between the two groups, the forest owners and the contractors. At first, the low-threshold service provides sharing knowledge and supporting each other to strengthen women. Collaborating with existing networks and initiatives and growing together is the aim. All are welcome who either own a forest or are interested in forest-related topics.

    • Fem4Forest, Slovenia

      Fem4Forest strengthens the capacity of the forest sector at local, regional, and interregional levels through the increased involvement and skills of women. The project is evidence-based and adopts a multi-stakeholder approach. Demand-driven actions are designed and implemented to support equal opportunities and competencies in the labour and timber markets of the Danube Region (DR). Specific objectives: • Develop innovative methods and tools for better integration of women into work positions and • decision-making in the forest sector of the DR. • Exchange best practices to increase the capacities of the forest sector at local and regional levels with more active roles for women. • Support female forest owners to increase job opportunities and income from their forests and enter new markets. The Fem4Forest project addresses crucial macro-regional challenges, such as knowledge transfer, education, collaboration, and innovation towards a more resource and energy-efficient, environmentally sustainable Danube Region. Overall, the project offers new and well-adapted instruments to facilitate the innovation process and support more active roles for women in the forest sector.

    • Climate Resilient Rural Development, Georgia

      CENN is implementing a project Promoting Sustainable Forest Management for Climate Resilient Rural Development in Georgia with the support of the Austrian Development Cooperation. The project aims to halt and reverse the impact of forest degradation across Georgia. The project works at the national and local levels to establish sustainable forest management and rural development approaches. With this, the project is contributing to the reduction of rural poverty and sustainable green growth. A key component of the project is to empower rural women to act as leaders in the community and to be meaningfully involved in forest management and rural development decision-making. CENN is doing this through providing skill-based and thematic trainings, offering grants, and strengthening their advocacy knowledge to influence the decision-makers. CENN has consolidated women’s voices in forestry sector by establishing four women’s councils in the target regions: Adjara, Mtskheta-Mtianeti, Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti and Kakheti. Forests provide abundant resources, they are our lifeline and a path out of poverty for many communities. All across Georgia, women are already informally involved in an innovative use of forest resources, but need institutional support and education to help them reach their potential.  CENN is non-governmental organisation working to protect the environmental by fostering sustainable development throughout the South Caucasus. CENN specialises in a number of areas including combating climate change, sustainable management of resources, building and developing healthy and prosperous climate resilient communities, and empowering women and girls to participate in creating inclusive solutions.

    Area 3

    Just transition

    The following are examples of initiatives that help to 1. reduce the impact of job losses and industry changes on workers and communities, 2. produce new green and decent jobs, or 3. integrate provisions for just transition in the forestry sector into national plans and policies for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and the national environmental and climate change action plans.

    • Forestry Advisor, New Zealand

      When passion meets purpose! From childhood dreams of saving the planet to her role as a Forestry Advisor at the Ministry for Primary Industries of New Zealand, Michelle Sundermann is on a mission to nurture our forests and empower communities to thrive sustainably. Michelle is more than a forestry professional. As a Forestry Advisor, she embodies the spirit of transformation—she is the catalyst driving change. With confidence, she guides landowners and empowers communities to open doors for new forest projects and afforestation, paving the way for a greener future.

    • Communications Associate at CIFOR-ICRAF, Philippines

      The degradation of species-rich agricultural and forest landscapes needs to be halted, while the growing global demand for food, feed, energy, fibre, and other ecosystem services is to be met. In response to this urgent challenge, private companies, governments, and financial service providers are increasingly investing in sustainable activities that reduce pressure on forests and farmlands. CIFOR-ICRAF contributes to these efforts through evidence-based solutions for new business models and investments in diverse forest and tree crop value chains, which benefit rural livelihoods and economies, while minimizing environmental impacts.

    • Afforestation, Iceland

      Iceland is making fantastic progress in afforestation, with better results than ever before. After a ten-year lull in tree planting following the financial crash of 2008, planting numbers are up to 6 million seedlings 2022 and look to go much higher in the coming years. This is due to decisions by the Icelandic government connected to tackling climate change and to greatly increased interest on the part of companies, organizations and individuals in supporting Icelandic forestry. Cooperation between state agencies for afforestation on public lands has reclamation of native woodlands as a main goal and has increased greatly in the last three years. Cooperation with municipalities is important in developing outdoor recreation forests. Iceland had practically no forests 70 years ago and therefore no forest culture or traditions. International cooperation has allowed them to import forest knowledge, first in the form of Icelanders going abroad for education in forestry. Then came Nordic cooperation, which gradually increased and is still the cornerstone of foreign cooperation for Icelandic forestry. Participation in European cooperation has also gradually increased, through Forest Europe, EUFORGEN and a number of EU-funded projects. Cooperation with other countries has been less, mostly with the US and Canada. They, then, needed to adapt the knowledge gained through their own research and development. In the absence of culture and tradition, science became the basis of forestry. Without that, Iceland would still be treeless.

    • Social Forestry Austria

      Social Forestry, Austria

      Our aim is to create jobs for people with difficult access to the labor market. In order to achieve this, existing social organizations and funding opportunities can be used and adjusted to the employers’ requirements. Workplaces are designed in such a way that optimizes the advantages of working in the nature.

    • Biofertilizers and Biopesticides, Spain

      We like fungi, we like mushrooms, we like forests. This group of living things has been studied very little in comparison with plants and animals. That's why discovering new industrial applications in fungi has extraordinary potential.

    Area 4

    Seizing and expanding new opportunities for forests in a green economy

    The following are examples of initiatives that 1. map non-traditional forest goods and services and unlock their potential; 2. promote sustainable forestry in rural communities; and 3. make use of new opportunities as an alternative career path for workers no longer able to carry out traditional forest work.

    • Painter, Germany

      Through art, we inspire conversations about our relationship with nature and push for responsible stewardship and climate action. That is why in this episode of our Novel Green Forest Jobs campaign, we want to highlight painters as pioneers of Green Forest Jobs. Listen to Johannes Eichhorn as he describes the intention behind his paintings.

    • Gelzhäuser Forst, Germany

      The Organic Tiny House is not only an effective CO2 store, but also a symbol for the protection and preservation of our forests. The wood comes from trees that have fallen victim to the bark beetle and climate change. The proceeds are used to plant new mixed forests and leave parts of the forest to nature, resulting in a resilient forest with high biodiversity.

    • Tractor driver, Czechia

      Archbishop’s forests and estates company takes care of 42 000 hectares of church forests in the Czech Republic. It means that the company is the biggest administrator of the church forests in the country. Except for sustainable management of forests, they also focus on public awareness raising. In 2020 they have started a video campaign, Forest through the eyes of… this campaign aimed to bring the forestry professions closer to people. The campaign contains six short video shots from 1st person's view of the different forest workers with their personal commentary. The audience could experience the individual professions of our colleagues and learn about the importance and indispensability of their work. Only thanks to forestry professionals' careful work, we can continue to manage forests sustainably.

    • LIFE+ ForBioSensing, Poland

      The project "Comprehensive monitoring of stand dynamics in Białowieża Forest supported with remote sensing techniques ", co-financed by the European Commission under European Union financial instrument LIFE+ and the National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management. The LIFE Programme is the European Union’s funding instrument for the environment. The general objective of LIFE is to contribute to the implementation, updating and development of EU environmental policy and legislation by co-financing pilot or demonstration projects with European added value. The current LIFE program of action for the environment and climate covering the 2014-2020 financial perspective, it is a continuation of the LIFE + financial instrument functioning in 2007-2013.

    • Xilva (Sustainable Finance), Austria-Spain

      Forests are one of our best Natural Climate Solutions. Capital providers are stepping up to support these impactful solutions and emerging asset classes and thousands of project developers are diligently working to scale ‘reforestation’, ‘avoided deforestation’ and ‘improved forest management’ offerings. Xilva’s digital marketplace matches capital providers with forest projects that generate positive outcomes for climate, biodiversity, and local communities.

    • Bioeconomy specialization, Finland

      In Eastern Finland there is an abundance of natural resources such as forest. Moreover, the area is known of esteemed companies that use the natural resources or provide machines and services for the bioeconomy sector. For example, companies such as Ponsse, Lunawood, Arbonaut, and EcoProtech have their origins as well as major operation in Eastern Finland, to mention a few. Companies like this all over Finland need skillful personnel and experts who stay on top of the rapid development of bioeconomy. The transition towards bioeconomy requires the ability to create new solutions by combining existing processes, raw materials and side streams. Therefore, at the higher education they started to develop continuous learning opportunities that can be used throughout their careers. In this collaborative project they have been developing the bioeconomy specialization education for professionals in working life. With close cooperation between the local universities they can now better serve the companies, public sector and individual professionals and create added value together.

    Area 5

    Recruiting, retraining and retaining the workforce of the future

    The following are examples of initiatives that 1. give priority to attracting high potential, in particular young, new entrants and new skills for the forestry sector; 2. meet decent work criteria and fit with the image of forestry as part of a green economy; and 3. Improve wages, working conditions and career prospects in the forestry sector and in occupations related to the green economy.

    • A day with a forester, Czech Republic

      Every year in the spring months, we participate in the nation-wide popular educational event Den s lesníkem (A day with a forester). Pupils of primary schools spend all morning in the company of our gamekeepers and foresters. Together they go through the educational route around Convent Pond that is strongly connected to the Zdar nad Sazavou Estate, company headquarters of KINSKÝ Žďár, a.s. Pupils experience examples of work in the forest on selected stations and learn about the importance of such operations. One of the kid's favorite stations is a presentation of hound training connected to the topic of gamekeeping. Pupils also learn about proper forest care, afforestation, natural forest regeneration, planting trees, and the necessity and means of tree felling. Explaining contemporary problems such as bark beetle calamity in Czechia is also part of the program. Children from the primary school can also observe from safe distance work of lumberjack and can admire their skills while felling trees. This activity is well received by children and is an opportunity to try numbering wood on their own. During the program, pupils meet coachmen with horses bringing wood closer to the heavy machinery. It is an important principle of environmentally friendly technique that is hard to find nowadays. On many occasions, kids will observe in admiration how horses react to the commands of the coachmen and are usually very interested in details such as how heavy the horse is, how much weight it can pull, how horseshoes are made, how horses are trained, etc. An important part of forestry is forest machinery. There is a presentation of wood export machinery, picking up wood by hydraulics and children can peek inside of the cabin of the driver. The main focus of the guided tour led by foresters from KINSKÝ Žďár, a.s. through the most attractive localities in Zdarske vrchy region (most attractive from the perspective of forestry economy, bark beetle calamity, and nature protection) is to improve the relationship between humans and forest and help the wide public to understand nature regularities. Another focus is on explaining basic principles of a sustainable economy, and other principles and regularities in nature protection by KINSKÝ Žďár, a. s. After the guided tour visitors will view the forest with a new set of eyes. Diversification of the guided tour can be upon request discussion with foresters at the forest banquet. Guided tour Vyprávění lesa (Telling a story of the forest) is most suitable for work collectives, high schools, colleges, and groups booked in advance with the possibility to adapt the program upon request. One of the main priorities of KINSKÝ Žďár, a.s. is to obtain a mutually beneficial connection between the economical and recreational function of the forest and its long term, continuous, sustainable development. One of the ways how to reach this goal has been for the experienced foresters of KINSKÝ company to develop a positive relationship between the public and the nature by showing principles and regularities of the forest ecosystems in the field. Great examples of the forestry pedagogy in Žďárské vrchy region where KINSKÝ Žďár, a.s. operates are well renowned educational programs Den s lesníkem (A day with a forester) for schools of new program Vyprávění lesa (Telling a story of the forest) aimed at the wide public.

    • NRJ Sweden

      Nature Related Jobs, Sweden

      Nature Related Jobs is a project of the Swedish Forest Agency to facilitate access to positions within the “green sector”. It targets job seekers who are newcomers in Sweden and people who have been unemployed for a long period of time. While trying to bridge the gender gap, the project prepares its participants for the labor market.

    • ATP Armenia

      Armenia Tree Project, Armenia

      The Armenia Tree Project (ATP) hires local villagers to plant hundreds of thousands of trees every spring and fall. New planted forests enhance biodiversity, soil and water conservation, and carbon sequestration.

    • Protective Forest Hub, Austria

      The Protective Forest Hub improves the framework conditions for an efficient management of protective forests. Due to the large forest cover in Austria - nearly the half of the country is covered with forests - this project is very important for green jobs in the forestry and a sustainable development for many regions.