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Forests cover 30% of the earth’s land surface. They provide basic sustenance for an estimated 1.6 billion people, store a large proportion of the world's biodiversity and provide raw material for a widely traded and used commodity and ecosystem services such as clean water, carbon sequestration and soil protection. Forests are also a major source of creative and artistic inspiration. Sustainable management and use of the world’s forests will be a critical component of a sustainable future for the human beings.
This subject introduces the world’s forests from social, historical, environmental and economic perspectives. It will describe the evolutionary development of forests, classification of forest types, factors determining forest distribution, how people have interacted with forests during human history and the many values and benefits of the forest including forest products and trade and environmental services, aesthetic functions and forests in literature and art. Impacts of global change, policies for sustainable forest management, the role of plantations and the use of forest products in architecture and construction.
Intended learning outcomes
- To introduce forests from different scientific, cultural, historic, economic and geographic perspectives
- To develop an understanding of global economic, social and environmental and political systems using forests as a integrating theme
- Develop critical thinking skills
- Develop on-line study and investigation skills
- Good report writing skills
Last updated: 16 November 2019