Bürgi, R.; Cevasco, L.; Demeter, et al. 2020. “Where do we come from? Forest history and cultural heritage” In How to balance forestry and biodiversity conservation. A view across Europe, edited by F. Krumm, F.; Schuck, A. & Rigling, A. Birmendorf: European Forest Institute (EFI) & Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (WSL).


Forests cover about a third of the European land area and provide a multitude of ecosystem services. They are subject to constant change and increasing demands with respect to the ecosystem services they provide. As well as provision of timber, non-timber forest goods (e.g. berries and mushrooms), clean water, carbon sequestration, and protection against natural disasters, there is increasing emphasis being placed on conservation and promotion of biodiversity within forests. However, the state of biodiversity in European forests varies widely. Because of the different biogeographic, sociocultural, political, and climatic conditions at small scales, there is a wide variety of situations, approaches, and legacies across the continent.
This book strives to show the challenges that forest managers are faced with to fulfil the societal demands with regard to forests, and especially to integrate the promotion of biodiversity.
In a first section (12 chapters), 44 authors from science, policy, and practice describe the driving factors of forest management; these factors include national laws and legacies, ownership structures, forest history, and socio-structural conditions. In a second section, 113 authors present 32 case examples from 19 European countries that demonstrate the different approaches to integrate the locally requested ecosystem services. These experiences are synthesised in a final section, and a toolbox of integrative measures is presented that is intended to support forest owners and managers to choose appropriate measures for targeted integrated management in their forests.