A human adventure
For tens of years, the RENECOFOR Network has been monitoring forest ecosystems and their responses to environmental changes. The term "network" not only refers to the nationally organized grid of 102 permanent observation sites, however. It also reflects the group of men and women who contribute to the global success of the programme and who guarantee the continuity and quality of the data collected.
From the field plot to the publication of the final results, forest ecosystem monitoring calls upon a wide range of skilled professionals:
- Hundreds of National Forest Office (ONF) foresters carry out a variety of observations and collect field samples, simultaneously, on the many sites located throughout France.
- Numerous associates and partners help with species inventories and other expert inventories, analyse field samples, design and maintain specialized tools and materials, and interpret and publicize the scientific data.
- RENECOFOR agents coordinate the Network, stimulate scientific and technical innovations, organize logistics, manage the data base and continuously improve protocols.
The set of skills involved in forest ecosystem monitoring only begins to make sense over the long term. The fastidious repetition of measurements demands great consistency and considerable patience is required before results come to fruition. The actors involved must be prepared to question their methodology if data quality appears insufficient. The RENECOFOR Network could not exist today without the continuing commitment of all these actors.
The personal accounts published in the brochure downloadable at the bottom of the page offer an insight into the human adventure that underlies our scientific research mission. Eleven people with different roles in the Network share their experience, impressions and emotions. Through these accounts, we thank all those who are contributing or have contributed to the success of our mission.
May our monitoring work continue with the same collective energy in the future! Indeed, much work remains to be done to understand the complexities of our ecosystems and to anticipate the effects of global change. The RENECOFOR heritage is already unique, but compared to the life cycle of a forest, the Network is still in its infancy.