Innovation in the forest sector: New paths to growth and sustainability
Innovation increases effectiveness, competitiveness and resilience with the goal of solving a problem. In the forest sector, innovation is needed in science and technology as well as in cooperation models to move forward effectively in meeting a wide range of SDGs, from sustainably managing forests (SDG15) to sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth (SDG8). Innovation can support a sustainable circular wood-based bioeconomy in a variety of ways. New innovative wood-based products, for example, can support the opening of new markets and allow substitution of products made of non-renewable resources (e.g., cement and steel) that are produced through consumption of fossil energy resources by wood-based products. Exploration of wood chemistry, from paper mills to biorefineries, can provide new intermediate renewable carbon products, for example nanocrystalline cellulose, that present new opportunities. And, innovation can support more efficient use of wood material as well as increased collection and recycling of wood products.
This session explores technological innovation as well as the many other essential elements of innovation, for example initiatives to shift industry culture, and brings a particular focus on how data can support systematic and sustainable progress. The goal of the session is to answer the question “What are the opportunities for facilitating innovation in the forest sector that will be an engine for sustainable economic growth?”