Institute of



Anna Frerck
Institute of Forestry

Leuschnerstraße 91
21031 Hamburg-Bergedorf
Phone: +49 40 739 62 301
Fax: +49 40 739 62 399

 (c) aid infodienst/P. Meyer; Thünen Institut/WF; Kai Timo Schoenfeld

Forests cover one third of the land surface of the earth.

The preservation of forests and sustainable forest management are goals in a set of international agreements. Many aspects of these agreements deal with economics. Topics include the impact of institutional frameworks, competition with other forms of land use and therefore cost of forest protection and ecosystem services. These topics provide economic starting points for enhancing sustainability of forest management and forest protection worldwide.

In Germany, preservation of forest is safeguarded by law. But even here there are competing demands on forests. In order to balance these competing demands the value of individual as well as collective benefits resulting from different forest management options need to be quantified.

National and international forestry is connected through the establishment of sector policies, such as European bio-energy policy. It is also intrinsically linked through international wood markets. Given Germany’s position as a large exporter it is intensively involved in international wood markets.

The Thünen Institute of Forestry has four research areas which address these topics:

  • Forestry in Germany
  • Forestry Worldwide
  • Forest Products Markets and
  • Forests and Society.

Fields of Activity

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Forestry in Germany
Our research team analyses the economic situation of forestry in German and its adaptation to changing legal regulations and economic and societal conditions.
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Forestry Worldwide
Globally, around 8,8 million hectares of forests – mainly tropical forests –are lost each year. This equates more as the area of Niedersachsen and Baden Württemberg together.
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Forest Products Markets
Our research team deals with the analysis of the utilization of wood as a resource.
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Forests and Society
The societal demands on forests are diverse, almost as diverse as society itself.

Cooperation with the University of Hamburg

The Thünen Institute of Forestry works closely with the Institute for Wood Science of the University of Hamburg. Jointy, we operate the degree programe of wood sciences.