Forestry today, like many other sectors that traditionally rely on material goods, faces significant global drivers of societal change that are less often addressed than the environmental concerns commonly in the spotlight of scientific, political, and news media. There are three major interconnected issues that are challenging forestry at its foundation: urbanization, tertiarization, and globalization. These issues are at the core of this book.
The urbanization of society, a process in development from the first steps of industrialization, is particularly significant today with the predominance and quick growth rate of the world’s urban population. Ongoing urbanization is creating new perspectives on forestry, inducing changes in its social representation, and changing lifestyles and practices with a tendency toward dematerialization. The process of urbanization is also creating a disconnect and in some ways is leaving behind rurality, the sector of society where forestry has traditionally developed and taken place over centuries.
The second issue covered in this book is the tertiarization of the economy. In society today, the sector of services largely dominates the economy and occupies the major part of the world’s active population. This ongoing process modifies professional modalities and ways of life and opens new doors to forests through the immaterial goods they provide. It also profoundly changes the framework, rules, processes, means of production, exchanges between economic factors, and the processes of innovation.
The third issue is undoubtedly globalization in its economic, political, and social components. Whether it’s through bridging distances, crossing borders, accelerating changes, standardizing practices, leveling hierarchical structures, or pushing for interdependence, globalization impacts everyone, everywhere in multiple ways. Forestry is no exception.
Forestry in the Midst of Global Changes focuses on these global drivers of change from the perspective of their relationships with how society functions. By analyzing them in depth through multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary, and even transdisciplinary approaches, this book is helping to design the forestry of tomorrow.