Forestry Education, Training and Professional Development in Africa uri icon


  • Classical forestry education treated forests as distinct entities defined in time and space (minimum tree/canopy density in an area) and forest science has been built around the ecological, biological and economic importance of that 'entity'. However as the social, cultural and environmental aspects of forestry grow in importance, particularly in Africa and much of the tropical developing world, they are re-defining forests and extending the bounds of forestry to include trees in different landscapes, including even non-wooded landscapes. This requires foresters to 'think outside the box', but learning to deal with forestry issues 'outside the forest' is one challenge that is yet to be fully integrated into forestry education. This paper relates Africa's experiences in order to initiate discussions about the way forward.
  • It is widely acknowledged that support for classical forestry education worldwide is declining and that new forestry-related programmes are developing. It is difficult to be precise about the fundamental causes of this situation as there are no direct cause-effect relationships, but it appears that there is a complex interplay of forces at global and local scales that make classical forestry education appear obsolete.

publication date

  • 2006
  • 2006