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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
2019 Dr. Ratcliffe researched the integration of genomic information into tree breeding programs. He developed models for early prediction of key traits, such as tree height, from information contained in thousands of genetic markers. His research enables tree breeding programs to rapidly respond to market demands for forest products and emerging threats. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2019 Forest harvesting affects the stability of stream ecosystems by altering organic matter flows. Dr. Yeung studied how and why leaf litter breakdown and quantity vary across space and time in natural and logging-affected streams. His findings provide new directions for managing forests and watersheds to sustain the ecological integrity of streams. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2019 Dr. Liu examined the structural behaviour of typical cross-laminated timber (CLT) connections, commonly used in multi-story buildings. Work entailed robust experimental setup, a mechanism-based model and detailed parameter study. This research increases our understanding of the structural performance of the CLT connections under complex loading. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2019 Dr. Barron explored the multiple ways suburban trees can be configured to maximize a range of benefits for the local community. Using a scenario approach that was informed by local residents, urban forest practitioners, and academics, she concluded that future forests can thrive in more dense suburban landscapes. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2019 Dr. Ramey explored how water and nutrient additions influenced invertebrates communities and leaf litter decomposition near small streams in British Columbia. Her work has applications to wildlife conservation and forest management of riparian zones in the Pacific Northwest, and contributes to our understanding of riparian headwater ecosystems. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2018 Dr. de Paula studied the effectiveness of riparian buffer management strategies to protect stream ecosystems in agricultural landscapes of the Amazon. These strategies were retaining forests in place and land abandonment for natural regeneration. He found that both strategies were effective, contributing to more sustainable agriculture practices Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2018 Dr. van der Zwan studied the factors limiting production of renewable biomass-based products. Through insights in rheology and enzymology, he revealed the underlying causes of key limitations and the mechanisms by which enzymes can be used to overcome them. This work betters our understanding of what is required to develop a sustainable bioeconomy. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2018 Dr. Elleouet studied spruce populations in Alaska to understand how expanding forests evolve in a changing climate. She found that the trees' long time to maturity and the capacity to disperse pollen across large distances might help these forests keep a healthy level of genetic diversity. She also explored the use of genomic data to infer past demographic changes in natural tree populations. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2018 Dr. Bass studied the fate of upstream migrating adult Pacific salmon that encounter fishing nets but escape or are released. He found that some net types cause higher mortality than others and that biological factors may have a large impact on survival. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2018 Dr. Gallagher developed an inexpensive and repeatable method to link historical land use to groundwater contamination. She subsequently applied her method to an aquifer on the US-Canada border to better understand the build up of nitrate in our drinking water. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)