Gentree is highly committed to achieving impact through the involvement of Stakeholders in the definition of the research questions and the identification of targets and objectives to be reached. The project partners are directing efforts towards creating opportunities for consultation with different actors in the forest sector.
The first Gentree stakeholders’ event took place in November 2016 in Madrid, and focused on establishing a dialogue between associations of forest owners, forest nurseries, officers of certification schemes, policy-makers and researchers around a critical theme, that is, the management of forest reproductive material in light of environmental changes, addressed by Gentree’s research.
New and improved strategies and decision support tools are needed for the exchange and use of forest reproductive material (FRM) under changing and uncertain environmental conditions. These could include using novel fitness-related traits and phenotypic plasticity in selection programmes, finding a balance between genetic diversity and genetic gain or optimizing the use of yet untapped or underused wild resources in well-known commercial species.
Understanding the perspective and demands of critical players in production and use of forest reproductive material, such as nurseries and forest owners and managers, is crucial to ensure that research products can respond to practical needs.
More than 40 participants representing different institutions from 21 European countries attended the event which resulted in concrete recommendations for Gentree research direction and for further uptake by the European Programme on Forest Genetic Resources (EUFORGEN).