Careers in forestry

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The forestry sector is both one of Australia's largest resource and manufacturing industries, and one of its most diverse. Foresters work from boardrooms to the bush, in conservation and production, and at scales from the paddock to the global. A career in forestry opens up a wide spectrum of opportunities around the world.

Forestry is not just about understanding trees and forest ecosystems. It's about working with people, companies and governments to promote and sustain the diverse benefits forests represent. Professional foresters are central to addressing issues central to the future of our environment and regional economies: the management of native forests for conservation and sustainable production; the management of forested landscapes for environmental services; the development of new forms of forestry and forest industries to address land degradation in many parts of Australia, to restore landscapes and to help farmers enhance and diversify their incomes.

Foresters may work in:

  • State or territory forestry or national parks agencies – maintaining them for current and future generations, usually in partnership with local communities and indigenous Australians
  • Government – developing policies, representing their State or Australia in national and international meetings, and engaging with stakeholders – locally, nationally, and globally
  • Private forestry or resource companies – growing and processing forest products for environmentally friendly and sustainable economic development
  • Community and conservation groups such as Greening Australia – advising farmers, land managers and others who need to grow and manage trees
  • Universities and research organisations such as the CSIRO – finding new ways to grow, manage and use trees and forests for all their benefits
  • Guiding corporations and investors – providing advice about assessing risks and managing opportunities
  • International organisations such as the World Conservation Union, the World Bank and the Centre for International Forestry Research – working to meet the needs of communities around the world.

Employment prospects for foresters are excellent. Currently in Australia there is high demand for professional forestry graduates who have 'hands-on' practical understanding and the ability to take on leadership and management roles as companies adapt to new knowledge, technologies, commercial pressures and global trends. The National Forestry Masters Program is designed to develop tomorrow's leaders in forestry.

For more information about careers in the forestry sector both within Australia and internationally please see the following website:

Within Australia:
http://www.australianforests.org.au/forestindustries/careers.htm
http://www.landfood.unimelb.edu.au/courses/forestry.html
http://treedudes.com.au/

Internationally:
http://forestrycareers.org/

Opportunities to study for a PhD:
http://www.crcforestry.com.au/education-outreach/scholarships/list/index.html