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Summer School: Modelling Assisted Migration to adapt forests and ecosystem services to climate change

Vogelperspektive auf FAST Traunkirchen mit Traunsee im Hintergrund

The Austrian Research Centre for Forests (BFW) will host a six-day summer school at the forestry training centre Traunkirchen from July 30 to August 40, 2023. It will provide insights into assisted migration of forests under climate change.

Forest trees have evolved at species and population levels to adapt to the local environment in which they grow. Such local adaptations lead to genetically differentiated populations, with traits that enable them to adapt to biotic and abiotic stress factors. As climate changes, forest tree populations are likely to respond in three possible ways: adapt, migrate, or become locally extinct. Natural migration and adaptation are very slow processes that cannot keep up with rapidly changing climate, resulting in maladapted populations with reduced capacity to provide multiple ecosystem services.

Given the limitations in tree migration and rapid adaptation, it has been increasingly realized that human-facilitated realignment will be required to match the populations to the environment to which they are adapted. Such facilitated movement is commonly referred to as assisted migration, assisted colonization, assisted relocation, or facilitated migration.

Together with The EVOLTREE network and Czech University of Life Sciences (CULS), the BFW will organize a six-day Summer School on this topic at the forestry training centre Traunkirchen from July 30 to August 4, 2023. This summer school aims to provide in-depth insight on Assisted Migration of forests in climate change with a focus on models to guide decision support.

Participants will get hands-on experience in developing models to identify and spatially map adapted and maladapted populations of forest tree species in climate change. Candidates will also have a real-time understanding of the design, issues, and challenges of forest provenance trials through a guided excursion to provenance trials and forest nurseries.

Application and Registration

The registration fee for summer school is 1200 Euros. This will cover stay and food during the lecture and excursion. Accepted participants are expected to bear travel costs to the summer school venue. EVOLTREE will provide financial support to a limited number of candidates. See the EVOLTREE webpage for details.

For registration, please email your CV, a motivation letter (one A4 page) to the following by 15 April 2023:,

Lectures and exkursion are held in English. Basic or elementary knowledge of statistics and R programming is expected.