Pro Silva Annual Meeting Luxembourg 2022

 “Knowledge to the Foresters – Pro Silva as the knowledge hub for dissemination of Close to Nature Forestry

Foresters from across the world convened in Luxembourg this week for the 2022 Annual Meeting of Pro Silva, the organisation which promotes close-to-nature-forestry (CTNF) across Europe. This three-day event had been postponed twice due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but this year’s agenda was the most comprehensive yet, hosted by Pro Silva Luxembourg.

The meeting began on Wednesday with the Annual Board Meeting at Hotel Parc Belle-Vue in Luxembourg, where Pro Silva members discussed the current issues facing the sustainable management of European forests. For the first time, there was significant representation from Scandinavian and Baltic countries with new member Silva Ry from Finland, and participants from Sweden, Latvia, Estonia, and a new partnership with the International Forest Students Association (IFSA). Further afield, there was online participation from Brazil (ACEF), India (For EcoIndia), as well as Croatia, Portugal, Slovakia, Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina.


“At long last, Pro Silva members will come together this week to discuss the unprecedented issues and opportunities we are facing as owners and managers of European forests. We are extremely grateful to Pro Silva Luxembourg for their generous hosting of our 25th Annual Meeting, with an extensive programme exploring the themes of urban forestry, forest management and hydrology and the reconciliation of forestry, nature conservation and tourism. In 2017, at the Annual Meeting in Sibiu, Romania, we created the slogan ‘Transition to Transmission’ as a development task for Pro Silva looking forward. And now in Luxembourg in 2022, the main topic for discussion will be how Pro Silva can improve its function as a hub for the dissemination of science and evidence in close-to-nature forest management, which has been accumulated over 30 years since its inception in Slovenia in 1989”Eckart Senitza, Chairman of Pro Silva.

Topics of discussion initiated by foresters in Luxembourg  included the conversion of monoculture plantations to uneven mixed forests; the restoration of the functions of forest soils, competition between Sessile oak and Beech, and the implementation of the ‘near-natural silviculture’ regulation. Also on the agenda was an update on the Pro Silva network of exemplary forests, which now totals 120 forest stands encompassing an area of 133,000 ha. These forests represent our best examples of close-to-nature forest management trajectories, providing the basis for data exchange and research, and a location for training and demonstration. Pro Silva Executive Assistant Anne Crespin will present the new CTNF training project under development at Forêt.Nature, and there were updates on other CTNF training initiatives across Europe including the Association Futaie Irrégulière in France, and ASKAFOR.

From the boreal pine forests of Northern Scandinavia to the Pyrenean oak woods of Spain and Portugal, we already have the experience in how to transform European forests to a more resilient state. The pressing task now is how to effectively communicate and demonstrate this knowledge base so that policymakers, forest owners, forest managers, students and even farmers across Europe are empowered to utilise their forest resource and maintain their vitality in the process.

Who we are

Pro Silva is a European organisation which promotes close to nature forestry and continuous cover forest systems. It was established in 1989 in Slovenia. At present there are 22 full members of the organisation and there are also several other countries with associate membership. Since 2018 we have associated members from the United States (Forest Stewards Guild, New England Forestry Foundation), from India (ForEco India), from Brazil (ACEF St. Catarina) and Canada (“Les Amis de la forêt Ouareau”) and hopefully this marks the beginning of the formation of a global network. More than 5500 professionals and forest owners are involved in Pro Silva.

Pro Silva promotes its principles and concepts through a Europe wide program of silvicultural education involving seminars and excursions. Increasingly the members are also involved as partners in national or international research and networking projects. A European network of best practice demonstration forests is being developed.

30 Years of Applying CCF in Perthshire
With Charlie Taylor

Following our most recent successful webinar we have now made a recording available on YouTube for anyone that missed it or would like to revisit: VIEW NOW ON YOUTUBE

Charlie Taylor is currently Strategic Planning Manager for Forestry and Land Scotland. Prior to this, for nearly 30 years, he was Forest District Manager in Tay Forest District through the various incarnations of the Forestry Commission during that time. He led a large team tasked with looking after 38,000 ha of the national forests across Perth & Kinross, Angus, Dundee and north-east Fife. This included large operational programmes (e.g. 100,000m3 of clearfelling and 70,000m3 of thinning), a Forest Park, a Woodland Park, 6 Special Areas for Conservation, 13 SSSI sites, numerous cultural heritage sites and engagement with a wide range of stakeholders.

Before moving to Tay he was a Siviculture Project Leader in Forest Research, based at the Northern Research Station. Although initially focussed on forest nutrition, the portfolio of projects expanded to include species trials and agroforestry experiments spread across the uplands of Britain. The silvicultural experience gained during this time provided the drive to initiate the large-scale development of CCF in the national forests in Scotland. The proposed commitment of over 250ha in Craigvinean Forest near Dunkeld to CCF in 1991 required a full Forestry Commission (GB) Board meeting on site to agree this first major exception to the policy prevailing at that time.

Over the next three decades the area committed to CCF rolled out to many other forests across the District. Sustaining the thinning and cleaning programme to deliver this proved challenging due to the vagaries of the timber market, the scale of the programmes, scattered nature of regneration, contractor skills and turnover of staff.

Please contact Michelle at if you have any questions.

Freestyle Silviculture in Slovenia
With Professor Jurij Diaci

Following our most recent successful webinar we have now made a recording available on YouTube for anyone that missed it or would like to revisit: VIEW NOW ON YOUTUBE

Professor Jurij Diaci is head of the Department of Silviculture at the Department of Forestry, Biotechnical Faculty, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. He holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in forestry from the University of Ljubljana and a PhD from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology. He gained practical experience in silviculture while working in the Nazarje mountain region in the Savinja Alps. 

His research work is in the field of forest ecology and silviculture, with emphasis on old-growth forests and uneven-aged mixed managed forests. He is interested in forest response and adaptation to climate change, as well as the scientific basis for close-to-nature, ecological forestry. He has led more than 20 national research projects, participated in several international projects (e.g., BEAR, NATMAN, LISS, ONEforest), and is fascinated with networking science and practice. 

He has written and edited several books and published more than 80 scientific articles. He has served as a board member of the international association Pro Silva and is chairman of the board of the Pahernik Foundation, which manages 630 hectares of forest that has been managed in a close-to-nature approach for more than 100 years.

Please contact Michelle at if you have any questions.

CCFG Event

Date: Thursday 26th May 2022
Location: Cranborne & Crichel Down Estates, East Dorset
Meeting Time: 09.15 for 09.45 start


Growth responses to interventions during the transition of Douglas fir and oak plantations to irregular structures.

A major gap in our knowledge relating to the transition of even-aged stands to permanently irregular structures is the lack of stand/ yield models. This meeting will consider this issue in light of increment and growing stock information in a number of Douglas fir stands in various stages of transformation and will also consider the growth response of oak plantations subject to innovative thinning regimes. 

We advise you to bring a packed lunch and clothing to suit any weather we may encounter.

Spaces are limited to 40 people so please book early to avoid disappointment.

Bookings: Book HERE
Contact: If you have any queries please contact:

ThinkForest webinar on Closer to Nature Forest Management – recording Available

In case you missed the event or want to watch it again, a recording of the event is now available on Youtube.

A presentation on the study ‘Closer to Nature Forest Management’ held in the event by Prof. Jørgen Bo Larsen is available here.


The ThinkForest event asks:

• What are the current pressures on forest biodiversity in managed forests as well as on forests’ health and resilience?

• What kind of existing nature-based forest management approaches are there – and what is their ability to support biodiversity, stability and adaptability to uncertain future conditions?

• What could be the guiding principles and framework for flexible European-wide implementation of Closer-to-Nature Forest Management?

• What are the barriers and opportunities for its implementation?

CCFG Event

Date: 14-17 June 2022
Location: Luxembourg


The next Annual Meeting of Pro Silva will be in Luxembourg from 14th to 17th June 2022, after an unfortunate delay of two years.  Pro Silva Luxembourg will offer a comprehensive excursion program with specific topics and have also invited special guests to support the thematic discussion. The detailed program and the registration link will be published here:

Contact: For more information contact

Using Forest Development Types to Implement CCF
With Dr Jens Haufe, (Forest Research)

Following our sixth successful webinar we have now made a recording available on YouTube for anyone that missed it or would like to revisit: VIEW NOW ON YOUTUBE

Dr Jens Haufe is the Head of Technical Development branch, Forest Research and is based in Ae, Scotland. His main role is a silvicultural trainer/advisor and many professional foresters will have attended one of his courses. Before joining the Forestry Commission he worked at Bangor University on the Tyfiant Coed project.

Please contact Michelle at if you have any questions.