Forestry sciences and economics

Forestry science and management deals with the forest ecosystem and its planned use

The field of study at a glance

The course covers, among other things, the importance of forests for the environment. This primarily includes the sustainable performance of the natural ecosystem for the climate, the water balance, keeping the air clean and soil fertility, the landscape, and the agricultural and infrastructure.

The importance for the national economy arises from the fact that a large part of Germany is covered with forest and wood is economically important as a renewable raw material, for example for the domestic wood and paper industry. Tasks in the international area are becoming increasingly important. Overall, forestry strives for optimal wood production on an ecological basis while at the same time ensuring the protective and recreational function of the forest. The tasks of forestry experts are varied: They not only have to solve biological and ecological problems, but also have technical and economic understanding, legal knowledge, commercial skills and extensive administrative knowledge.

Offered courses

The courses in this area are called forestry sciences, forestry or urban tree and forest management. Depending on their focus, students tend to deal with economic, environmental science or engineering topics. Bachelor's and master's degree programs are offered at universities and technical colleges.

Course content

In the bachelor's program, students receive basic scientific and methodological training in forestry and resource management through modules in chemistry, biology, soil science, forest botany and zoology, dendrology (the study of trees and woody plants), climatology and forestry law.

In the master's program you can specialize in forestry management, management of forest resources, forest nature conservation, biodiversity, wood technology, timber management, ecosystem analysis or international forestry.

In additional modules, students deal with project management, quality management or forest education.

Studying forestry at a technical college focuses more on practical forest management and the operational implementation of forestry measures than on tasks in the management of a forest district.

Internships or practical semesters are common at universities and technical colleges.

Admission criteria & application for study

Depending on your previous school/professional education, a preparatory internship lasting several weeks is usually required at universities of applied sciences, for example at forestry offices or forestry companies

Career opportunities after graduation

Forestry science/management graduates traditionally work for public employers, e.g. in district forestry departments and forestry offices, in federal, state or local forestry administrations, in forestry directorates, forestry departments in governments and ministries, in forestry research and research institutes Chambers of Agriculture and offices, authorities and institutions in the field of environmental and nature conservation as well as landscape conservation. There are also activities in the private sector, e.g. in the timber industry and the timber trade, at engineering offices and management consultancies, in large private forestry companies, at botanical gardens and nature parks or at forestry interest groups. Services such as reports, planning or foreign activities in reforestation projects are also conceivable.