Supporting Research

Documents are available in accessible formats upon request


With the help of a prestigious advisory panel and public input, the Minnesota Forest Resources Council's Research Advisory Committee conducted an assessment of the current status of forest resources research in the state and an identification of important forest research needs. The MFRC publication "Minnesota's Forest Resources Research: Assessment and Needs" is intended to inform decision-makers and encourage investment in priority research needs.

Tier One: Priority Research Issues

  • Forest health threats
  • Implications and mitigation of climate change
  • Forest fragmentation, parcelization and development
  • Changes and losses in biodiversity and wildlife habitat
  • Woody biomass harvesting and energy

Tier Two: Priority Research Issues

    Methods of forestland management/silviculture
  • Water quality and forests
  • Health of the forest products industry
  • Forest productivity concerns and implications
  • Long-term ecological impacts of timber harvesting

A copy of the full report is available online; hard copies are available by contacting the MFRC office. A one-page outline of research priorities is also available.

Recent Research

Northern Minnesota Forestry Analysis

The MFRC commissioned an update to our 2002 Forestry Bottleneck Analysis to measure the importance of the forest products and tourism sectors. This analysis, conducted by region, examined the current position of these sectors in northern Minnesota. The study found that although most of the forest products sectors declined over the past ten years, they continue to be the most important economic drivers in northern Minnesota. The hospitality sectors have remained relatively stable over the past decade. The current report, Northern Minnesota Forestry Analysis, is available online.

Key knowledge gaps regarding impacts of biomass harvesting on ecosystem components

In 2008, the MFRC provided funding to a team of researchers from the University of Minnesota and the USDA Forest Service to address several key knowledge gaps regarding the impacts of biomass harvesting on critical ecosystem components, including deadwood-dependent (saproxylic) organisms, native plant communities, and nutrient availability. The recent report, Impacts woody biomass harvesting on saproxylic communities, nutrient availability, and productivity in aspen ecosystems, is available online.

Factors influencing willingness to pay for public stumpage

Recent fluctuations in Minnesota’s stumpage market have raised concern about the policies, procedures, and contract provisions associated with Minnesota’s timber sale programs on public land. In 2006, the Governor’s Task Force on the Competitiveness of Minnesota’s Primary Forest Products Industry recommended that funds be appropriated to the RAC to provide direction on best practices for setting up and administering timber sales on public lands. The recent report, A National Review of State Timber Sale Programs and an Analysis of Factors Influencing Minnesota Stumpage Prices, is available online.

Updated 2015-10-02