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Forests go far beyond British Columbia; they cover 1/3 of the Earth’s land surface. Forestry graduate students learn from a dynamic and diverse group of researchers who educate and communicate how forests and forest products contribute to the well-being of all living things. The health and sustainability of forests and the people who depend on them underlies everything we do.

The Faculty of Forestry is one of the top institutions globally in forest-related education and research. The unique breadth of expertise we possess allows us to integrate new knowledge across many disciplines. Offering both master’s and doctoral programs, our graduate students learn from a dynamic and diverse group of researchers from around the world.


Research Facilities

The Forest Sciences Centre is a showcase for construction using Canadian forest products, and was architecturally designed to mimic the landscape of British Columbia: towering trees, mountains, and blue-green waters. The 17,505-square-metre Forest Sciences complex has 11 classrooms, 2 lecture theatres, teaching laboratories, office space, computer labs, study areas, and a cafeteria, and houses the Faculty’s three departments.

Built alongside the Forest Sciences Centre is the 3,730-square-metre Centre for Advanced Wood Processing. It is Canada’s national centre of excellence for education and research related to wood products processing and advanced wood products manufacturing, and works to advance knowledge that fosters job creation, stabilizes forest-dependent communities, encourages increased value recovery, and ensures the sustainable management of Canada’s forests. This building includes two 25-seat classrooms, a machine lab, a simulator lab and a computer lab.

Within the Faculty of Forestry, there are also several research groups. Visit the website of each project to find out more.

Off-campus facilities include two Research Forests: the Malcolm Knapp Research Forest in Maple Ridge and the Alex Fraser Research Forest near Williams Lake. These are working forests located throughout the province where students and faculty can study in an outdoor setting. Fish and wildlife, silviculture, forest harvesting, forest ecology, forest management, and resources management figure prominently in these field studies.

Research Highlights

UBC Forestry is turning out a new generation of foresters, and faculty are committed to meeting future challenges in forestry through in-depth, cutting edge research. In fact, UBC Forestry receives the highest level of forestry research funding of any forestry faculty in Canada.

In the 2017/2018 fiscal year, members of the Faculty Forestry were awarded a total of over $12 million in research funding. 

Our wide breadth of research includes topics such as tree rings, integrated remote sensing, bioenergy, forest conservation genetics, landscape visualizations, African forest conservation and development, alpine studies, climate change, and advanced wood processing.

Recent Publications

This is an incomplete sample of recent publications in chronological order by UBC faculty members with a primary appointment in the Faculty of Forestry.


Recent Thesis Submissions

Doctoral Citations

A doctoral citation summarizes the nature of the independent research, provides a high-level overview of the study, states the significance of the work and says who will benefit from the findings in clear, non-specialized language, so that members of a lay audience will understand it.
Year Citation Program
2013 Dr. Lindgren has spent over 20 years studying the environmental impact of intensive management of young forests throughout BC's interior. His research has clearly demonstrated that forests can be managed for increased productivity without compromising biodiversity. These results can enhance the economic and environmental values of our forests. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2013 Dr. Liu developed a theoretical computer program to simulate the mechanical behavior of metal-plate-connected joints in wood trusses. The information derived from the program results can be used to evaluate the adequacy of a given structural design, facilitate truss plate, truss joint and overall truss design. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2013 Dr. Atwood showed how the loss of top predators from freshwater ecosystems influences the magnitude of carbon dioxide emissions from freshwaters. This research greatly expands our knowledge and understanding of how species loss may ultimately influence greenhouse gas dynamics and climate change. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2013 Dr. Varhola studied the impact of mountain pine beetle on forest structure and snow melt in the interior of British Columbia. He showed how three-dimensional remote sensing tools are necessary to more accurately predict catastrophic flooding events. This research is essential to hydrologic forecasters, foresters and local ranchers. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2013 Dr. Churchland studied the effect of forest harvesting on Pacific Northwest soil microbes. She found that retaining individual trees in harvested sites best maintains the structure and functions of soil microbial communities. Application of these findings will result in tree-harvesting methods that maintain soil nutrients and microbial biodiversity. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2013 Dr. Kalcsits developed and tested a model describing how nitrogen movement in plants influences nitrogen isotope composition. He applied it to identify genetic variation in nitrogen use in balsam poplar. This research provides a new way to measure plant nitrogen-use traits, which are often technically challenging to measure. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2013 Dr. Vockler carried out his research in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia. Through modeling, he came up with a value of how much rainwater enters the mountain block and becomes deep groundwater. Results of this study are important for the communities of the Okanagan Valley and indicators for how to deal with limited water resources in the future. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2013 Dr. Dallmeyer studied the use of lignin, an organic binding substance, as a precursor for new materials. His research explored the use of electrostatic forces to draw lignin into fibres, and conversion of those fibres into new advanced materials. These materials have potential applications in energy storage, composites, and adsorption [sic]. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2013 Dr. Stephen examined the technical and economic feasibility of producing commercial ethanol from Canada's forest resources. He compared the performance of this wood-based renewable transportation fuel to other biofuels and bioenergy options using a variety of tools. This research provides a framework for evaluation of emerging bio-based products. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2013 Dr. Naduvile-Veettil wants to save the planet by helping the world to get over its addiction to oil! He focussed on the key step of converting wood pellets to ethanol that can be used as fuel. His research focused on ways a simple process such as steam pre-treatment can be made effective, to break down the complex structure of wood into sugars that become fuel. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)