UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A comparative study of forest research organization and policy Thirgood, Jack Vincent


An attempt is made to evaluate the various concepts and to identify the orderly processes that allow of the efficient conduct of forestry research. Differing national research patterns are discussed. Emphasis is on the organization of forestry research from the viewpoint of public and quasi-official bodies. The scope of forestry research is considered. It is stressed that forestry research to be purposeful must be reflected in the practice of forestry. Importance is attached to the maintenance of close relationships between research officers and forestry practitioners and consideration is given to the means by which this may be attained. The need for specialist research officers with adequate supporting trained staff is emphasized and attention directed to the development of an organizational framework that is favourable to the conduct of research in forestry. Although it is recognized that the difference between fundamental and applied research may, at times, be unclear, a distinction is drawn between the two. It is argued that because of the nature of forestry such differentiation is essential for the efficient conduct of research; different forms of organization, technique, staffing structure and qualities in the personnel being required in each case. The link between research and education is examined, and, together with state, industrial, co-operative and privately sponsored research groups, attention is directed to organizational forms and the machinery of control. Research programing is considered, and the processes adopted by various agencies are reviewed, together with financial provision. The importance of inter-agency collaboration is emphasized. Reference is made to personnel matters and to the conditions of service of research staff. Contrasting viewpoints on training for research are presented. Publication policy, and the dissemination of findings is dealt with in some detail and documentation processes reviewed. There is some discussion of the functions and place of the experimental forest in forestry research. Finally, international research activity is surveyed, and the work of regional groupings of various kinds reviewed. Stress is placed upon the contribution of the international agencies. The history and development of certain national programs is presented as an appendix. An attempt has been made to present one philosophy concretely and consistently and, through consideration of the body of the literature, to explain this, while providing a framework that, it is hoped, may be helpful to others in the formulation of what must essentially be a personal philosophy. Throughout, the universality of forestry experience is emphasized. A world view is taken and examples and views drawn from a number of countries in an attempt to obtain a synthesis of research thought.

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