As highlighted by FAO’s Third Asia-Pacific Forest Sector Outlook Study (APFSOS III), the use of innovative technologies – from digital technologies, biological technologies, processing technologies and new wood-based products, to social innovations and innovative finance mechanisms – have the potential to revolutionize forest management and to make critical contributions to sustainable development along forest value chains.
Innovation will be key in the coming decades, to meet an increasing demand for wood, other forest products and ecosystem services while halting and reversing deforestation, in line with the commitment taken at COP26 in Glasgow by the international community.
However, innovative technologies uptake has been slow and uneven in the Asia-Pacific region. Investments are needed, in education, capacity building and infrastructure development to make innovations happen on the ground.
Two main barriers to innovative technologies uptake and scaling up have been identified, namely: (i) the lack of capacity (in terms of infrastructures and equipment, human capital and financial resources); and (ii) rigid legal frameworks (policies and regulations) often lagging far behind rapidly evolving technologies.
This brief, building upon state-of-the-art knowledge and extensive consultation of 425 key regional stakeholders, suggests a set of ten overarching recommendations for policy- and decision-makers that are further detailed in 59 specific options to facilitate the dissemination and adoption of innovative technologies in Asia and the Pacific and overcome the main barriers identified above.